In-app subscriptions arrive for App Store games

in iPad edited January 2014
Apple has approved the first game developer to begin using the in-app subscription model for a gaming service, though the company took some convincing [updated].

Update: Bloomberg now reports that Apple has surprised Big Fish Games by quietly removing its subscription gaming app. The publisher said it is "trying to figure out what happened," as it had worked closely with Apple to gain official approval last week.

Big Fish Games will now be able to offer a $6.99 a month gaming subscription that allows players to switch between games within one App Store app, Bloomberg reports. The game publisher is now offering an "all-you-can-eat" service that provides unlimited access to its game catalogue from within a centralized app.

Apple announced in-app subscription for the App Store in February, but the new feature appeared to be initially aimed at publishers of newspapers, magazines, video and music. Periodical publishers have increasingly taken to the service, especially since Apple introduced a native Newsstand app for iOS 5.


But, when it came to subscription gaming, Apple was skeptical at first. ?It took longer than usual to be approved,? Big Fish Games founder Paul Thelen said. ?They needed to be convinced there?s a reason to charge customers every month.?

Subscription gaming services have had varied success in the past, but Thelen believes that the Apple's ecosystem now makes a thriving service possible. ?This is the first time that the technology has matched the business model,? he said, adding that an Android version is scheduled to arrive in the first quarter of next year.

According to the report, the publisher will also offer a free version of its service, but play will be limited to 30 minutes a day and will include advertising. The paid version will cost $4.99 initially, before rising to $6.99 as more games arrive. For now, a Wi-Fi connection will be required to play, as the games are streamed from the company's servers.

With the rise of the App Store, Apple has come into its own as a significant player in the gaming industry. According to one analytics firm, iOS and Android together took in 58 percent of mobile gaming revenue in the U.S. this year, posing a substantial threat to rival Nintendo's profits. A recent profile of the typical iPad user by a marketing firm found that consumers who buy video games are "highly likely" to also purchase Apple's touchscreen tablet.


  • Reply 1 of 10
    Why would I want to not own my apps?
  • Reply 2 of 10
    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

    Why would I want to not own my apps?

    Lolz, because apparently the apps own you!
  • Reply 3 of 10
    Originally Posted by linkgx1 View Post

    Lolz, because apparently the apps own you!

    "In ☭ App Store, apps own YOU!"
  • Reply 4 of 10
    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

    Why would I want to not own my apps?

    Perhaps these aren't very good so you wouldn't want to
  • Reply 5 of 10
    I suppose these are the games equivalent to flash games on browsers. Otherwise, how do they justify the all you can eat games for $7.
  • Reply 6 of 10
    The company is using the same model used by OnLive, whereby users pay a fixed subscription and are able to then play video games for as long as they want. As opposed to paying for a video game that is completed within days.
  • Reply 7 of 10
    Any app you pay money for should not require or even offer an in app purchase, unless it is to unlock a free version of an app into a full version.

    This is especially true with games. Seriously, people essentially paying money for a higher score? It makes the whole Game Center thing totally skewed.
  • Reply 8 of 10
    peteopeteo Posts: 402member
    I don't understand why every tech site is going crazy over this story

    This App is not doing any thing special that other subscription services don't already do on iOS do.

    This is nothing more than a remote desktop app (like iswiffer or many others) that let you play flash games. This is just locked down to their own server and their own flash games optimized for touch. You must have internet access for this to work (like all other remote desktop apps)

    This is not some new business model for the app store.

    Pretty much Junk.
  • Reply 9 of 10
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 24,387member
    No need to be concerned about in-app game subscriptions anymore. Apple giveth, then taketh away, with no explanation. AI updated the story here, as did 9to5.
  • Reply 10 of 10

    I`m sure it`s better not to pay a lot of money for different expensive games but try cheaper ones like 100 floors game or so.


    here you can find the description.



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