The Continued Growth of Web-Based App Stores

The unprecedented success of Apple’s App Store will influence other major players to launch similar offerings of their own on the web, which will mean new markets for game developers there.

“I think the emergence of app stores is the new trend that will increasingly take hold over the next few years,” as Nitrome’s Annal puts it. “Already iOS and Android are big business for some online devs that port their games there, but I think there is a wider trend about to take hold, as the big players push to capitalize on that App Store experience on the desktop. Online we already have the Chrome Store [see Figure 10-4], and on the desktop, the Mac store is already growing, and Microsoft’s Windows-based store is coming in the next version of Windows. Developers could see huge amounts of profit there if they took advantage of that.”

Figure 10-4: Google Chrome Store for games

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This is definitely true, although in the short term, the biggest beneficiaries of this move will probably be the established developers. To grow these new app markets, the major players (Google and Microsoft, for starters) will continue turning to the Angry Birds of the world, offering them exclusive or preferred deals. (This has already happened with the Chrome Store.) For that reason, it’s quite possible that the web game market will generally resist this trend toward web ...

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