Better than any other country, Japan’s mobile game makers have cracked the revenue code despite having few world-wide megahits. The secret: an industry that is constantly experimenting with new ways to master the psychology of mobile payments.
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Ephemeral messaging startup Snapchat has raised $50 million in a Series C round of venture capital, according to an SEC filing. The money was contributed by a single investor, CEO Evan Spiegel told TechCrunch. With today’s investment and the $60 million Series B round just a few months ago, Snapchat has raised upward of $120 million in total.
Mobile app analytics platform Kontagent and business engine PlayHaven will merge, the two companies announced today, with PlayHaven’s ex-CEO Andy Yang at the helm of the combined companies, and Kontagent’s ex-CEO Josh Williams becoming CTO and chairman of the board. In an interview, Yang said the decision was spurred by an “extremely fragmented” mobile B2B market and overlap between the companies’ customers. Over time, Kontagent-PlayHaven will integrate the two companies’ products into one suite.
Japan is now the top country worldwide in revenue from Apple’s App Store and Google Play, according to a new report from App Annie. The app analytics company attributed the surprising shift to rapid smartphone adoption over the past year in Japan — where feature phones have held on for longer — and explosive growth in Google Play spending, outpacing global trends due to the availability of carrier billing as an alternative to credit cards.
News ByteNWay, the two-year-old gaming startup behind the Facebook game Chrono Blade, has raised a $5 million Series A round. Co-founder and CEO Taehoon Kim said TransLink Capital, which led the round, is well connected in Asia and that the action RPG has generated interest from Asian publishers. The company plans to launch new online multiplayer features this week, and will carry those real-time MMO features over to iOS, Android and Ouya ports of Chrono Blade next year — something nWay says is a technological feat for mobile.
News Bytereported earlier this year that it would, Twitter on Tuesday launched a significant revamp of its private messaging product, adding the ability to send photos via Direct Message. Twitter also added a swipeable timeline feature (which we also reported would happen). All of this comes days before a highly anticipated Instagram event.