Numerous mobile game publishers have tried to pinpoint and formulate the winning ingredients for successful mobile games. Some of these ingredients appear universal and straightforward, while others are controversial or genre-specific.
Not surprisingly, the indisputable ingredient that is both fundamental and critical to a mobile game success is simply performance. It affects every stage and each component of the user experience and players are likely to abandon a game if they perceive its performance insufficient.
But how does one gauge Mobile Performance and what metrics can we use to assess the user experience?
One of the challenges for DevOps and developers has been a lack of standard metrics to measure the end user experience. PacketZoom, the leader in mobile app acceleration, has recently launched the Mobile Observatory - a first global standard to gauge mobile app performance across geographies and networks. This benchmark indicated aggregated performance of apps operating in actual cellular and WiFi networks to provide a single metric by country, that DevOps and developers can use.
The proprietary PacketZoom data showed that in October 2016, 3.9% of Mobile App Sessions in the US were impacted by network disconnections , compared with 6.3% in Mexico, 9.3% in India, 7.9% in France and 2.8% in Japan.
Disconnections are highly disruptive to the end user experience and are caused by many factors such as driving through a tunnel, moving to a different network type etc.
Make them Happy.
As we all know, the mobile game industry is a challenging space. Whether you're targeting mid-core players in a rainbow themed FPS or casual players who want to farm space candies, it may seem like the category is saturated and mobile gamers are a notoriously tough crowd to please.
A global studyby CA Technologiesmeasured the major factors impacting consumer loyalty and usage of mobile apps. The study surveyed 6,770 consumers and 809 business decision-makers in 18 countries. The leading factor impacting loyalty was app loading time : 68 percent of consumers have left an app because of poor loading times. Furthermore, users indicated that they expect an app to load in six seconds or less. More than half of those respondents demanded a load time of less than three seconds. If an app fails to load within that time, consumers are likely to abandon the app, or a brand altogether.
The majority of mobile gamers play less than an hour every month. This underlines the necessity to provide a fun and satisfying experience that will motivate them to spend their monthly hour on your platform. Gamers expect a fast, dynamic, gratifying experience with immediate rewards. In most cases, you only get one shot in impressing them. Keep them waiting or get them frustrated - they'll leave you and may never come back. Give them a good experience - they may become your Active Users . Give them an excellent experience and they may join those Avid Gamers that spend ten hours a week on your game.
Make them stay.
Players leave games, and may leave them way too fast. On average, less than 40% of players return to a free-to-play game after just one session. Of course, for users to return to your game, they need to enjoy their first session. Users that are turned off in the beginning may never give the game a second chance.
Retention is arguably the most important metric in a free-to-play game.
If players leave a game too fast and too often, the game has failed, particularly if you are monetizing your game with in-app purchases. The same rule applies if you're monetizing an app with advertising: Latency and connection failure during ad display = lost ad revenue.
A report by GameAnalyticsshows that strong player retention is directly correlated with a game's financial success; Successful games create long-term relationships with users and gamers that enjoy an experience long enough are willing to purchase game customization, quicker regeneration or access to special content via IAP.
Make it Zoom.
That's where PacketZoom comes in: our Mobile Expresslane was created with gamers in mind: it eliminates performance roadblocks, enables X2.5 download speed and accelerates performance.
A unique PacketZoom benefit is improved reliability of downloads. One of PacketZoom's mobile game clients experienced network disconnection mid-transfer in 2.79% of all app sessions. When incorporating Packet Zoom's Session Assurance, 80% of the failed transfers we rescued, significantly enhancing the player experience.
Fewer interruptions result in enhanced gamer engagement, higher retention and increased in-app revenue.