Monday, 29 August 2011

Game Apps are the main driving force for social networks

The tug of war between recently launched Google Plus and the established social networking site Facebook is on. The internet analysts have concluded that both have advantages and disadvantages and users would be the ultimate judge. 
Google Plus began with a bang in June, but since then the response has not been along expected lines with its 3.8 million users finding it hard to comprehend what the social networking site is all about. On the contrary, Facebook is still going stronger. According to data from online analytics firm, the users from India has grown by nearly five per cent in the last 30 days. 

To start with, Google Plus had captured the Indian audience with features such as Hangouts that facilitates group video-conferencing for free. On the other hand, the most preferred activity on Facebook is sharing photos, which forms the site's primary user engagement tool. Harsh Jain, founder & managing director, Red Digital, an interactive engagement specialist firm said, "Third party games and applications have also been a preferred activity on Facebook and have helped it to exponentially increase its user base over the last few years." Early this month, comScore announced that Google Plus had reached 25 million users within months of its launch, a milestone that Facebook took three years to achieve, while micro-blogging site Twitter touched the numbers in 2.5 years. Google Plus is trying to catch up with Facebook and launched 16 game titles onto its platform developed by ten different companies. 
Facebook rose to prominence last year with Zynga's Farmville. The game alone boasts of nearly 80 million users from Facebook's total user base of over 750 million. In contrast, Google Plus is taking a more controlled approach when it comes to users endorsing an app on their profile pages. In Google Plus, most users' posts are confined to a certain number of people. Users are allowed to choose which circles they want to develop (like game scores or information sharing) to be known. This is already a disadvantage for game apps that are micro-marketed as opposed to Facebook's in-every-user's-friend's-face approach. Hence, the users’ affection for the site hasn’t increased much. For Facebook, social discovery of apps like games is acting as a driving force. The top 80 games on Facebook have at least one million active users across the globe.


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