Baidu’s Mobile Game September report shows that Baidu launched 185 mobile games in September. These include online games, dominated by card and action genres, and downloadable games, dominated by casual, shooter and action genres. The online game genres contribute the most revenue. The #1 downloadable offline game ranked by gross revenue is 3D Zhong Ji Che Shen (“3D Ultimate Car God”).
Perfect World opened Xbox One game experience centers in Beijing, Shanghai and Chongqing to help promote hardware and game sales. This is a new line of business for Perfect World, one of China’s largest domestic publicly traded online game operators. It demonstrates Perfect World’s conviction that console gaming will take off in China and online game operators could benefit from that.
South Korea’s Samsung Galaxy White League of Legends competitive team won the World Championship LoL tournament on its home turf in Seoul on 10/21/14, besting China’s Star Horn Royal Club team 3 games to 1 in the final matchup. The event is monumental as the World Cup stadium was at capacity of 40,000 attendees, more than double the 2013 attendance of 18,000 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, which again was more than double the 8,000 attendees of the 2012 World Championship LoL tournament. The victorious Samsung Galaxy White earned $1,000,000 in prize money in the World Championship tournament this year, and 2nd place Star Horn Royal brought home $250,000 to China. The New York Times has been covering this actively, most recently with a recap of the tournament, and with a previous article on competitive gaming.
Vietnam’s Ministry of Finance has proposed a 10% tax on the online gaming industry in order to address the connection between the increase in gaming addiction and game-related crimes among youngsters. The Ministry believes that if gamers are charged more by way of the tax they will be less likely to play as often or with such vigor. The games industry is fighting back, and the tax is not yet confirmed. Niko will cover this in our upcoming 2014 Southeast Asian Games Market Regional Report, due to be published in November.
Sony’s PS4 was awarded China’s 3C certification (CCC – China Compulsory Certification), required for manufacturing and sales in the country. The documents states that the PS4 will be manufactured by Hong Fujin Precision Electronics (Yantai) Co., Ltd., a company owned by Foxconn Technology Group. Industry observers anticipate that the PS4 will launch in China before the end of 2014 to compete against Xbox One, which launched in September.
The sale of used iPhones is big business in Vietnam, and unlocking the iCloud accounts on iOS 7 and iOS 8 seems to be an important part of that process. Vietnamese jailbreak-service providers of smartphones, who call themselves “techmen,” can unlock iCloud on both iOS 7 and iOS 8 on iPhone 4, 4S, 5, etc, and claim to be able to do so on iPhone 6 and 6 Plus too. Techmen charge about VND 3 million ($140) for the service on the older phones, but say that it will cost more on the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. There may be other reasons to unlock the iCloud other than simply to be able to operated a previously used phone.