Jon Russell was Asia Editor for The Next Web from 2011 to 2014. Originally from the UK, he lives in Bangkok, Thailand. You can find him on T Jon Russell was Asia Editor for The Next Web from 2011 to 2014. Originally from the UK, he lives in Bangkok, Thailand. You can find him on Twitter, Angel List, LinkedIn.
Line has announced that there have now been more than 150 cumulative downloads of games on its social gaming platform (Google Translate link). The impressive milestone comes just three months after Line Game celebrated 100 million app downloads.
The Line service is available for iOS, Android, Windows Phone and more, and boasts more than 150 million registered users worldwide. It was one of the first to monetize mobile messaging — both through its games platform and virtual content, such as emoticon-like stickers — and it recorded an impressive $58 million in revenue for Q1 2013.
Launched in July 2012, Line Game allows iOS and Android users to play games with their friends via the Line app. Once both parties have downloaded a specific title (Line users can prompt friends to download particular games) they both load the game and are ready to go.
Currently there are 33 games available — that’s up from 17 titles three months ago.
The company highlights the progress of two games — Line Pop and Line Wind — which have passed 30 million and 10 million downloads, respectively. In celebration Line is running competitions to give away free stickers and virtual coins through the two apps.
Line makes money from its games by offering a range of in-app purchases, and tying the titles in to its mobile messaging service. The fact that it has seen nearly one game download per registered user is impressive (although clearly that is an average and doesn’t mean every user has downloaded a game.)
Japan-based Line was the first messenger to introduce games, but others have followed suit. Korea’s Kakao Talk launched a games platform last year — which is now see revenues of $30 million per month. US-based video chat service Tango became the first outside of Asia to add games when it launched with an initial two titles this month.
Line continues to experiment with new business models. It’s most recent being an in-app app store. Businesses and developers can pay to list their apps in the store, while users are incentivized to download apps to get free virtual coins.
Already established in Japan and boasting a growing presence in Southeast Asia, it is looking to other regions to continue to grow its user base. Line is targeting Europe, the US, China and Latin America, where it is already seeing traction. Earlier this month, it added support for German, Italian and Portuguese to its iOS app, hinting at a broader push in Europe.
Headline image via Line/Facebook
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