Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg detailed some changes that impact social gaming giant, Zynga, while Zynga CTO Cadir Lee talks expansion plans. Who ever said the world of social media gaming was boring?
Zuckerberg gave a talk today at a Facebook event for developers in the company's California's headquarters in Palo Alto. Among other interesting tidbits, he mentioned that games are one of the biggest complaints for users despite being one of the most popular features on the service. By Facebook's figures, 200 million of Facebook's 500 million active users play games on Facebook a month. Naturally, game developers want to narrow that gap between gamer and non-gamer by advertising their products via social networking tools (like automatic status updates from FarmVille that appear in all friended user's news feeds), but this creates what Zuckerberg calls a "negative" experience that could drive Facebook users away. To address this problem and a slew of others, Facebook revised its gaming platform, including a tweak that only shows in-game status updates to users that already have the game installed.
Keep in mind that the last time Facebook introduced gaming changes to its site (removing third-party notifications), FamrVille creator Zynga reportedly lost over 10 million users. Zynga showed no signs of slowing down today, however, as the company took center stage at Oracle's OpenWorld conference in San Francisco. The company's CTO, Cadir Lee, is reported as saying that roughly 10 percent of the world's internet population (about 215 million users) has played a Zynga title. The company adds as many as 1,000 servers every week to keep up with traffic and supports 3 billion "neighbor" connections in games like FarmVille and FrontierVille.
Time will tell how much of an impact the new changes have on Zynga's user base and Facebook's user base. Seems like Zynga's already thinking outside the box about new users by adding features like the Horseshoe Pit to introduce existing players to other Zynga products. Between these developments today, the Facebook Credits system, Zynga's five-year deal with Facebook, and the rumored Google Games service, the social media space just got a whole lot more interesting.
Sources:Zynga Moves 1 Petabyte Of Data Daily; Adds 1,000 Servers A Week [TechCrunch]Mark Zuckerberg navigates the tightrope between gamers and non-gamers (video) [VentureBeat]