Tue, 02/05/2008

2008 Press Releases

RealGames Announces Results of Casual Games Survey

Survey findings indicate 90 percent of casual gamers will watch in-game streaming video ads in exchange for free game play

AMSTERDAM — February 6, 2008  — From Casual Connect, the industry's premier casual games conference — digital entertainment services company RealNetworks®, Inc. (NASDAQ: RNWK) today announced new survey results from consumers playing downloadable casual games from its RealGames™ family of sites and syndication network.  In a survey of 1500 RealGames players, nearly 90 percent said they will watch video ads before and during natural breaks in casual games in exchange for free game play. Additionally, 34 percent of the respondents said they take further action and click on in-game advertisements to learn more about the advertised product or service.

Over the past two years, RealGames — the pioneer in in-game streaming video ads for downloadable casual games — has watched its customers embrace this innovative form of advertising with much more interest than many in the gaming industry originally expected. The Yankee Group recently reported that the global in-game advertising market which generated $77.7 million globally in 2006 will grow to $971.3 million by 2011.

"We have been evolving our customer sales model based on user's feedback since we created in-game streaming video advertising in the PC casual games space in 2006," said Chris Houtzer, senior director of new media, RealGames. "The right mix of advertising in our games gives us greater flexibility in providing advanced game-play options for our customers, sharing in incremental revenue with game developers, and delivering a competitive ROI for advertisers."

Houtzer added that the survey is a testament to the success of advertising and sponsorship programs in casual games and to new business models in the industry.  The vast majority of survey respondents fall in the coveted 30 plus female purchaser range.  Eighty-one percent were female and 65 percent were in the 35-64 age range which is in line with the core casual games demographic.

Players Will Watch In-Game Streaming Video Ads for Free Game Play (90 percent)

  • More than half, or 55 percent, of survey respondents said that they would watch any ad regardless of the topic.
  • An additional third, or 34 percent, said they would prefer to watch ads that are relevant to their needs.

Casual Game Players Actually "Like" the Video Ads

  • Nearly a third, or 31 percent, of game players surveyed say they actually "like" watching the video ads for various reasons, including the relevance of the ads to their needs and the short break from game play that the ads provide.
  • When given a choice of product and service types they would prefer to see advertised while playing casual games, more than 50 percent of respondents chose entertainment activities like movies or music. Hair and skin care products received 30 percent of the nods, while home cleaning products and weight loss products closely followed.

RealGames currently has a catalog of more than 500 downloadable games in seven different languages with more than 40 titles ad-enabled. The RealGames family of gaming portals includes RealArcade.com, GameHouse.com, Zylom.com, MrGoodLiving.com, Atrativa.com.br and GameTrust.com.

This year, RealNetworks plans to greatly expand the number of ad-enabled downloadable games.  RealGames will also be participating in Google's AdSense for Games beta program to introduce in-game ads to its Web-based games.

Expanding on the topic of advertising and casual games, Chris Houtzer and Peter van der Heijden, Zylom's director of Ad Sales, will be speaking at the Casual Connect Europe conference in Amsterdam Feb 6-8. The annual conference is organized by the Casual Games Association and more information can be found at their web site: http://amsterdam.casualconnect.org/.

For More Information:
Ryan Luckin

Audrey Craipain
SHIFT Communications



RealNetworks, Inc. delivers digital entertainment services to consumers via PC, portable music player, home entertainment system or mobile phone. Real created the streaming media category in 1995 and has continued to lead the market with pioneering products and services, including: RealPlayer®, the first mainstream media player to enable one-click downloading and recording of Internet video; the award-winning Rhapsody® digital music service, which delivers more than 1 billion songs per year; RealArcade®, one of the largest casual games destinations on the Web; and a variety of mobile entertainment services, such as ringback tones, offered to consumers through leading wireless carriers around the world.  RealNetworks' corporate information is located at www.realnetworks.com/company.

RealNetworks, GameHouse, RealArcade, Rhapsody, RealPlayer, RealGames and the Real logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of RealNetworks, Inc. or its subsidiaries.