Apple Almost Allows iPad Game Subscriptions
Due to the relative ease of use and game development, the iPad App store has plenty of unique business models. There are cheaper apps that are created on lower budgets, free-to-play games driven by micro-transactions, products populated with advertisements, and more. Apple’s popular tablet was almost introduced to yet another business model, in the form of a multi-game subscription for Big Fish Games.
On November 24th, 2011, Bloomberg reported that Apple gave permission to the casual game publisher Big Fish Games to sell a subscription model to iPad users. Users would pay a flat monthly fee to access a catalog of Big Fish titles, such as Mystery Case Files: Dire Grove, Garden Panic, and Toppling Towers, all games that are sold individually as well.
This service was planned to initially cost subscribers $5 per month, and to increase to $7 once the Big Fish catalog was filled out further. Titles would be streamed from a custom application by the publisher, requiring users to have a Wi-Fi connection to access games.
Soon after the report by Bloomberg, Apple removed this application from the App Store, due to reasons unknown.
This isn’t the end for the Big Fish subscription model, however. Big Fish still has plans to bring their subscription application to devices other than the iPad. Company founder Paul Thelen told Bloomberg that an Android version of the service will launch in the first quarter of 2012. He also noted that the app could be modified to work on TVs connected to the internet.