Update: You’ve got to love it when two high level employees, like a CEO and CMO, make statements that completely contradict the other. This morning, we informed you that Rovio had no plans to bring Angry Birds Space to Windows Phone devices, simply because of the cost and difficultly, combined with the platforms low marketshare. This was all from the mouth of Rovio’s Chief Marketing Officer, Peter Vesterbacka.
Now Reuters is reporting that Rovio CEO, Mikael Hed, is saying that they “will” be bringing Angry Birds Space to Windows Phone devices, a version for Microsoft’s OS is currently in development. This is obviously confusing, as the CEO is suppose to run the company and the CMO is responsible for marketing the company. Both should know what is being worked on, so how does something like this occur? Is a version of Angry Birds Space for Windows Phone coming or not?
When Rovio’s new game, “Angry Birds Space” landed in the iTunes store yesterday, it took less than an hour to dethrone DrawSomething from the top spot. A true testament to just how popular the Angry Birds franchise is, when the original game was released on the iPhone, it was a game that Android users were clambering for (much like Instagram) and a year and some months later, the original game still hangs out in the top ten.
Angry Birds is one of those games that can actually help sell devices. I have literally witnessed a 65 year old say they needed a smartphone, just for Angry Birds. A month later, they bought a DROID Incredible at Verizon and asked the clerk to show them how to down Angry Birds before they left the store. It’s fun, easy and cheap entertainment that anyone can play. The original Angry Birds is available on iOS, Android, Mac, Chrome, Windows Phone and other devices, but when Rovio announced Angry Birds Space, surprisingly, Windows Phone was missing from the list of supported devices.
Apparently, Rovio believes that the Windows Phone market share is “too small” and that it is not worth the time and investment to port it over, as it is a difficult process. With the original game, Rovio had Microsoft assist them with the porting process, something Peter Vesterbacka, Rovio’s Chief Marketing Officer, says, is a lot of work.
“If you look at activations, Apple’s iOS and Android are clearly bigger than any other platform. We want to be on all screens, but we have to consider the cost of supplying the smaller platforms. With Windows Phone it’s a lot of work to technically support it.”
As it stands right now, Rovio has no plans to bring Angry Birds Space to Windows Phone, which is a big deal. This is a game that many Windows Phone users would love to have, but sadly will not experience, unless they own another device, like an iPad or Android tablet (or carry another smartphone with Android or iOS).
It’s no secret that yesterday, I tweeted that I was using a Windows Phone as my second device, sort of test driving it. I even said that, lack of apps aside, I was actually enjoying it more than Android, for the time being. I think Windows Phone “can” be a great platform, but until it gets developer support, the platform will continue to struggle. Sadly, it’s a double-edge sword, people won’t support the platform, if the apps aren’t there, and developers won’t create apps if consumers won’t buy a Windows Phone. It’s a vicious circle, one that I’m not quite sure how to fix. All I know is that there will be some very upset Windows Phone users who won’t be able to enjoy Angry Birds Space, a game that is surely to be another massive hit for Rovio, with or without Windows Phone.