Trip Hawkins reckons Apple's new free-plus-paid model is 'very important'

DChoc will definitely be releasing such titles

Trip Hawkins reckons Apple's new free-plus-paid model is 'very important'
| Digital Chocolate news

How will Apple's free-plus-paid announcement concerning the ability of developers to release free apps containing paid micro-transactions to buy virtual objects and extra content shake up the App Store?

The truth is no one really knows yet.

Digital Chocolate boss Trip Hawkins reckons it will be significant however.

"This is very important and a big step by Apple towards better alignment in terms of how virtual worlds and social games combine free trial with monetisation," he says.

It's a trend Digital Chocolate is already embracing with its NanoVerse concept, which will bring its NanoStars virtual characters into various future games.

As well as acting as in-game modifiers, players will also be able to buy and swap the NanoStars using an application that's a cross between eBay and a stock exchange.

Overall, Apple's new free-plus-paid announcement is a model that should work really well in terms of enabling Digital Chocolate to release free games and then monetise them via micro-transactions.

The publisher has yet to announce the pricing details of NanoVerse Castles, the first game in the series, but Hawkins has confirmed it will definitely be releasing free-plus-paid games in future.

He also says the ability to submit one binary, which contains a combined free and paid app, will simplifies things for Digital Chocolate's development team.

On the questions of piracy, Hawkins reckons: "A big positive is the fact that a game server can determine if a customer is a legitimate paying customer or not."

Yet on many aspects of the potential changes, not even Trip Hawkins is sure what the end result will be.

"It's too early to tell," he replies to questions concerning the implications for the average price paid for games on the App Store, as well as the impact on the Free, Paid and Top Grossing charts.

Clearly there's a lot of experimentation still to be attempted with this new model of doing business.

Jon Jordan
Jon Jordan
A Pocket Gamer co-founder, Jon can turn his hand to anything except hand turning. He is editor-at-large at PG.biz which means he can arrive anywhere in the world, acting like a slightly confused uncle looking for the way out. He likes letters, cameras, imaginary numbers and legumes.