Et tu, Juniper?

It must be truly bleak: even the best friend of every young telecoms entrepreneur on the fundraising trail whose reports rarely failed to feature as a footnote in an investment memorandum for the next big digital thing now sounds a word of caution. Juniper (whose reports I still cannot afford) issued its latest report on mobile gaming and it actually reduces (for the first time, I'm sure, even if I haven't checked) its prior predictions on the growth and size of the sector in the next, erm, 20 years...

They see growth stifled by the restrictive operator business models. Dare I say it? May they be right? They refer to Apple's AppStore, which is the anti-christ to every operator's walled garden: free for all, free price-setting, Darwinian survival of the fittest (or least-charging), thousands of applications, games, etc, etc, and relatively generous revenue shares on top (although 80% of $0.00 is not very much at all).

Juniper points however to 2 important and true factors: the tolls demanded by the operators to access their precious customer base are very high indeed considering that many do not provide a very compelling service in return. Secondly, marketing and marketing opportunities on-deck normally - well - suck. This was all well and good as long as their were no alternatives (other than the likes of JambaThumbplay and few others). But with the ascent of the iPhone, everyone seems to erupt into a frenzy of trying to replicate the "beautifully simple and compelling UI" for which the purveyors of the Big Black Turtleneck are so famed for. This, Juniper fears, will lead to players exiting that business (I have heard unconfirmed rumours that SEGA decided to call it day on internal J2ME development following their huge success with Super Monkey Ball on the iPhone). 

Other than that though, not much new. And Juniper would not be Juniper if they would not predict "significant" growth in the next 5 years (conveniently long in order to be basically unpredictable): they see the market to roughly double in the next 5 years, which would be 20% growth per year (on today's terms), which is not all that bad after all. 

Blyk's CEO speaks

I post on Blyk, and the next day its CEO rushes to give an interview... Was he upset about what he read and unleashed a PR storm to rescue his company to fight sentiment of the blogosphere? Perhaps, perhaps not. Well, maybe not. On the merits, there is nothing dramatically new but it is worth mentioning, I guess, nonetheless. Judge by yourself.