The Charticle

The Charticle: QuizUp - the least successful most successful iPhone game ever

Ruling downloads, nowhere in top grossing

The Charticle: QuizUp - the least successful most successful iPhone game ever

The big news over the Christmas period was the $22 million of additional investment raised by QuizUpdeveloper Plain Vanilla.

The reason for the cash injection was the massive success of the head-to-head trivia game has experienced since its early November release, particularly in the US.

Amongst other things, the investment will be used to bring the game to iPad, Android and other platforms, as well as supporting additional languages.

At present, it's an iPhone-only English language game.

Local success

Looking at QuizUp's performance to-date, the free-to-play title has been the most downloaded app in five countries, including the US and the UK.

Apart for one day, QuizUp has been a top 5 most downloaded app in the US since launch - via App Annie

It's also been a top 10 most downloaded app in 15 countries and a top 100 app in 72 countries, something which demonstrates both its limitations and upside.

Because it requires a good working English vocabulary in order to play, the game's reach outside English-speaking territories - US, UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland - is limited.

The English language game hasn't performed so well in Russia - not top 500 - (top) or China - not top 750 - (above) however - via App Annie

In key markets such as Russia, China, Japan, South Korea and German, it's not even entered the top 450 chart for most download apps.

Show me the money

More significant, however, is QuizUp's almost total lack of monetisation.

At present, there are just three in-app purchases, which for an hour multiple the rate at which you earn XP.

They range in price from $1.99 (£1.49) for a double to $5.99 (£3.99) for a quadruple boost, but as there's no game mechanic which uses your level for anything other than match-making (and that only loosely), there's no reason for player to spend money.

When it comes to the US top grossing chart, QuizUp hasn't even hit the top 200 yet - via App Annie

And that's the reason QuizUp has been a total failure relative to its top grossing performance. In the US, its peak on the iPhone top grossing chart is 228, while in the UK it's 266.

Clearly, this is something the Plain Vanilla and its investors, which include Tencent and Sequoia Capital, will be keen to improve upon in 2014.

Contributing Editor

A Pocket Gamer co-founder, Jon is Contributing Editor at which means he acts like a slightly confused uncle who's forgotten where he's left his glasses. As well as letters and cameras, he likes imaginary numbers and legumes.