EA Boss: video game industry moving towards subscription based model
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EA Boss: video game industry moving towards subscription based model

In a recent interview, Electronic Arts (EA) CEO Andrew Wilson has said that it may eventually stop releasing new versions of its most popular video games, relying on updates delivered through a subscription-based model. This is an industry trend that’s been gaining in popularity over the past few years, and EA – one of the biggest games developers on the planet – has consistently been at the forefront.

EA’s share price has appreciated by 45% year to date

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SOURCE: Yahoo Finance

Wilson told Bloomberg TV that “There’s a world where it gets easier and easier to move that code around – where we may not have to do an annual release. We can really think about those games as a 365-day, live service.”

The video games industry has been moving towards a subscription-based service for some time. Physical sales have begun to take a backseat to digital downloads, and EA offers a $5 / month service that lets customers access a library of games. At present, there is still a six-month delay from release to featuring on this platform, meaning eager gamers are incentivized to pay extra and download games when they first appear. Wilson, who describes himself as a big fan of Spotify, might look to disrupt that further in the near future. He says:

“The greatest disruptor to the consumption of entertainment media in the last five years has been the combination of streaming plus subscription. It’s changed the way we watch television. It’s changed the way we listen to music. It’s changed the way I read books.”

Wilson thinks that the industry is shifting to one of greater ubiquity and access. He describes a future that EA is hoping to help usher in: “There’s a world not too far away from now where video games move from being a discrete, conscious experience to an indiscreet, subconscious experience.”

Disclosure

Dominion holds Electronic Arts in its Global Trends Ecommerce Fund.


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