The Pokémon Company launched its new Pokémon Home app on February 11, which allows players to store and transfer Pokémon between games. The mobile service had a promising release week as it was downloaded 1.3 million times between Android and iOS devices.
Pokémon Home brought in $1.8 million in gross revenue its first week thanks to its premium tier, which gives players more features starting at $3 a month.
Much of that success came from American players, with 34% of installs and 41% of revenue coming from the United States. Japan was close behind with 23% of total downloads.
The high numbers are surprising considering that Pokémon Home’s launch was filled with bugs, including crashes and a 992 error that would pop up when some users tried to transfer their Pokémon. The issues caused some fear that the storage system wasn’t secure enough to entrust with fans hard-earned Pokémon yet.
Even with the app’s launch woes, there are many reasons for The Pokémon Company to celebrate Home’s success. The company’s approach to the franchise has slowly evolved over the years, moving the games closer to service territory. The recently announced DLC pass for Pokémon Sword and Shield implies that those games will receive longer-term support, which could change The Pokémon Company’s one game per year model.
With a more modern push to monetize the franchise in place, The Pokémon Company could stand to make a lot of money off the upcoming DLC. Pokémon Home features a free tier, which means that the nearly $2 million revenue gained in the app’s first week all came from players who chose to shell out for premium features.
Even more impressive is that the app’s success comes after a wave of bad PR for Pokémon Sword and Shield, which prompted outrage from players who felt Game Freak skimped on development. The controversy didn’t seem to hurt the games much, which enjoyed the most successful launch of any game in the series with more than 6 million copies sold.
The Pokémon franchise feels bulletproof at the moment, thanks in no small part to the popular Pokémon Go. The Pokémon Company is in a good position to capitalize on the series with its new model and Home’s 1.3 million installs are a good omen for how much the company stands to gain with Sword and Shield’s DLC and the mysterious new Pokémon Sleep project.
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