GAME DEVELOPERS CONFERENCE, SAN FRANCISCO – March 02, 2011 – Akamai Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ:AKAM, news, filings), the leading provider of cloud optimization services, today announced Electronic Software Delivery for Gaming, a solution that leverages the strengths of the Akamai network to enhance a consumer’s game download experience and increase download completion rates for game publishers in the competitive online gaming space. Comprised of the Akamai Download Manager, Akamai Download Analytics, and HTTP delivery, the solution is intended to improve critical first impressions to give game publishers more tools to convert site visitors to paid customers.
Akamai Electronic Software Delivery for Gaming is designed to work with try-before-you-buy, massively multiplayer online games (MMOG) and free casual games to ensure a high-performing and engaging download experience to reduce download abandonment, improve completion rates and handle large demand spikes, without compromising the download experience. The solution also aims to give game publishers better insight into download metrics and consumer behavior, and support business models that help manage costs with a greater level of predictability.
“The Internet has transformed the gaming industry and presented new opportunities for game distribution and monetization,” said Reynold Harbin, Senior Product Line Director at Akamai. “Online and digitally-distributed games have advantages over the traditional software-in-a-box retail model, including more efficient game distribution, global reach, more social gaming experiences, and the opportunity for innovative, new business models. Akamai’s gaming solution was developed to help game publishers avoid the challenges of the Internet, thereby playing a key role in their online growth and success.”
Key design features of Akamai Electronic Software Delivery for Gaming include:
Akamai Download Manager
- Customizable download experience and download workflows
- Efficiently optimizes the download of large files, up to 10 GB (the equivalent of 2 DVDs)
- Users have more control, including the ability to start, pause and restart downloads
Akamai Download Analytics
- Insight into quality of service metrics, audience demographics, and user engagement
- The ability to perform download funnel analysis and report on key performance metrics by game, distribution channel and referring site
- Enables an efficient delivery of large game files through a hybrid model of HTTP edge server delivery and client side delivery
- More predictable delivery costs
Online game publishers have been leveraging Akamai Electronic Software Delivery for Gaming since early in its development to help grow their businesses, scale their infrastructure, and improve their end users’ experiences.
Leading MMOG provider Aeria Games (www.aeriagames.com) specializes in creating immersive, console-quality gaming experiences online. The most popular Aeria games average upwards of 35,000 downloads per month, with total monthly downloads across the portfolio exceeding 500,000. Aeria’s business model uses free games that are monetized through virtual goods making every download attempt critical. Aeria’s high quality games require large downloads that, prior to adopting Akamai, were difficult to deliver online. After evaluating many options, Aeria chose Akamai’s Download Manager and Download Analytics, to both accelerate and analyze the effectiveness of game downloads.
“Most of our games are up to 2 GB and very immersive, therefore, prior to implementing Akamai Download Manager, it was difficult to distribute online because broadband varies widely globally. If there’s an incomplete download it’s a waste of effort and waste of our marketing dollars, so completion rates are critical for us,” said Terry Ngo, CTO at Aeria Games. “Initially, we were using other analytic tools, and just guessed on users and completed downloads. With Akamai Download Analytics, we get a better picture of where and how we can improve.”
Burda:ic (www.burda-ic.com), a subsidiary of Hubert Burda Media, one of Germany’s largest media companies, operates 10 gaming properties on its free-to-play MMOG portal alaplaya.net. As Burda:ic tried to scale its infrastructure to meet the fast-growing demands of its global audience, it struggled with the high level of operational complexity, low quality of service and lack of reporting and visibility. Using a combination of edge and client-side downloads, Akamai helped Burda:ic lower customer acquisition costs—reducing customer abandonment and “time-to-play” through high-speed downloads. Burda:ic has seen a 20 percent increase in both download initiations and download completion rates since adopting Akamai’s Download Manager.
“The size of our games varies based on the complexity of graphics and embedded media – they tend to range from 600 MB to several GB,” said Ingo Griebl, CEO of Burda:ic. “The Akamai Download Manager allows users to do something in parallel while the download takes place in background, removing the “doomed to wait until its over” issue. All of this has contributed to a reduction in our download abandonment rate.”
For more information about Akamai Electronic Software Delivery for Gaming, please visithttp://www.akamai.com/html/industry/gaming.html
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Akamai Statement Under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act
This release contains information about future expectations, plans and prospects of Akamai’s management that constitute forward-looking statements for purposes of the safe harbor provisions under The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Actual results may differ materially from those indicated by these forward-looking statements as a result of various important factors including, but not limited to, the effects of any attempts to intentionally disrupt our services or network by hackers or others, inability or failure of any Akamai solution to operate as expected or advertised, a failure of Akamai’s network infrastructure, and other factors that are discussed in Akamai’s Annual Report on Form 10-K, quarterly reports on Form 10-Q, and other documents periodically filed with the SEC.