Activision embraces iOS with Flurry Inc. for indie game publishing partnership

activision embraces ios with flurry inc for indie game publishing partnership doubles down on mobile

If you want to survive in the video game business these days, you better make sure that you’ve got all your bases covered. It isn’t enough to have a snappy game for PlayStation 3 on a Blu-ray disc for sale down at Walmart. It isn’t even enough if that game is the most brilliantly conceived artistic vision in the history of the medium. The big publishers survive through ubiquity, by having games on every platform at all price ranges accessible to as many people as possible. Electronic Arts knows the score: The company has invested heavily in mobile games, buying up huge studios like PopCap games, and its mobile revenues grew 17% last year to $284 million, 23 percent of the company’s total revenue from digital platforms.

Activision Blizzard has been less aggressive in expanding beyond the traditional console and PC space. The company does huge digital business, $1.4 billion in fiscal 2012 alone, but that’s thanks predominantly to downloadable sales and subscription fees for Blizzard titles like World of Warcraft and add-on content for games like Call of Duty. Mobile games simply aren’t a priority for Activision.

That’s changing fast. Activision announced a new partnership with Flurry Inc. on Wednesday. Flurry, a mobile analytics company, will team with Activision to open a new mobile game publishing arm for the companies. It will seek out independent game studios making mobile games then publish and promote those titles on Apple’s iOS handhelds like iPhone and Android devices. These games will fall under the existing Activision Mobile Publishing umbrella, but the developers will keep ownership of their intellectual property, a rare move for Activision and publishers broadly.

The two companies are playing up the indie angle hard. Flurry CEO Simon Kalaf said, “Activision’s ability to support indie developer innovation, paired with Flurry’s ability to reach over 250 million consumers daily through its AppCircle user acquisition network, positions us to help generate the next wave of top mobile games.”

This is the second major development in mobile games for Activision in recent weeks. As reported on May 22, Activision is opening its own mobile game studio in the U.K. and former members of Rockstar Games are assisting in the staffing process.

All in all, Activision is taking a safe approach to the mobile business. The company’s revenues actually fell year-on-year in fiscal 2012, dropping to $3.9 billion from $4.6 billion the year before. Now is not the time for Activision to be spending huge sums acquiring established mobile studios to force itself into a position of power in mobile games. By publishing promising indie titles and founding its own studios though, the publisher is cultivating the businesses necessary to survive in the changing industry. The mobile revolution has already arrived though, and Activision’s shareholders should keep their fingers crossed that the company isn’t too late to the party.


We want every laptop to be as thin as an iPhone. But is it practical?

The Acer Swift 7 is the thinnest notebook you can buy, and it feels like the notebook of the future. But it makes too many compromises along the way, and some weird design choices hold it back.

Cops called to handle ‘Super Smash Bros. Ultimate’ noise end up playing the game

A group of friends were playing Super Smash Bros. Ultimate on the Nintendo Switch when cops arrived to respond to noise complaints from neighbors. In an unexpected twist, the officers ended up playing the game, too.
Cars is helping Hyundai mine the artificial intelligence gold rush

In November 2018, Hyundai invested in a startup named We talked to the company's founder to learn more about what that means for consumers in the not-too-distant futures.
Emerging Tech

An A.I. cracks the internet’s squiggly letter bot test in 0.5 seconds

How do you prove that you’re a human when communicating on the internet? The answer used to be by solving a CAPTCHA puzzle. But maybe not for too much longer. Here is the reason why.

Here's where Xur is and what he has for wares this week in 'Destiny 2: Forsaken'

The weekly vendor in Destiny 2: Forsaken always brings Exotic weapons and armor, some of the toughest loot to find in the game. Here's everything you need to know to track down Xur: Where he is, when he shows up, and what he's stocking.

‘Fortnite’ removes the Infinity Blade weapon after player backlash

Following player backlash over the Infinity Blade weapon's inclusion in Fortnite's battle royale mode, Epic Games decided to remove the weapon from the game completely. It was not limited to a special mode.

Want every suit in 'Marvel's Spider-Man' for PS4? Here's how to get them all

Marvel's Spider-Man features a whopping 33 different suits for Peter Parker to wear as he swings across New York City knocking out baddies. Here are all the suits and how to unlock them.

Everything about 'Red Dead Online', including its new microtransaction store

Red Dead Online will gradually rolled out to Red Dead Redemption 2 players via a beta. We've got all the details about the beta's suite of competitive and cooperative modes, as well as what to expect going forward.

HDR monitors are beginning to have an impact. Here are the best you can buy

HDR isn't the most common of PC monitor features and is often charged at a premium, but the list of available options is growing. These are the best HDR monitors you can buy right now.
Virtual Reality

Oculus Rift vs. HTC Vive: Prices drop, but our favorite stays the same

The Oculus Rift and HTC Vive are the two big names in the virtual reality arena, but most people can only afford one. Our comparison tells you which is best when you pit the Oculus Rift vs. HTC Vive.

Xbox One X vs. PS4 Pro: Which console is more powerful?

Far from cooling down, the console wars are only getting more intense. We compare Microsoft's Xbox One X to Sony's PlayStation 4 Pro to help you decide which premium console is right for you.

Find the perfect weapon in 'Call of Duty: Black Ops 4' multiplayer with our guide

Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 has several different guns to choose from in its multiplayer mode, and they're split across multiple classes. Here's a guide to all of them and when you should use them.

New ‘Stardew Valley’ content on the way, as game’s maker freezes next project

Stardew Valley creator Eric Barone said that he will continue working on new content for the indie farming simulator. The developer previously said that he will devote all his time to his next game, but that has been placed on hold for now.

Underwater survival game ‘Subnautica’ free on Epic Games’ online store

The award-winning underwater survival game Subnautica is currently available as a free download on the Epic Games store. The Steam challenger looks to attract players with a new free game every two weeks.