Todd Haushalter, in his role as Chief Product Officer at Evolution Gaming, knows alot about creating competitve products. Recently, he spoke with CalvinAyre.com’s Stephanie Tower about how the market is changing, and how companies can make the right decisions to stay at the front of the pack.
While most companies seek to dominate their competition, Haushalter does not see that as a successful plan at all. In fact, he recognizes that the industry is better off when there is a higher level of competition.
“If you took away a lot of that innovation, you would have a lot of players that would just be bored and so you want to have an industry that’s full,“ he told Tower. “You want to have lots of musicians making music and that brings up the music industry. You want to have lots of great movies and that brings up the movie industry…It’s no different in our industry.”
To drive home this point, he makes a comparison with the fast-food industry. “There’s an interesting fact, like, when you set up a McDonald’s and you build a Burger King and a Subway next to it, they all make more money. It’s a fascinating concept.”
Fascinating, but also one that is important for competitors to understand. While no one likes to see a competitor get ahead in the market, all benefit in the long run. “Sure, it’s thorny for a second when someone creates a great product but, in the big picture, we all win when companies make great new products that players love.”
While Haushalter sees the benefit in competition, he recognizes that this is becoming an ultra-competitive industry. Not only is there a lot of great competition, but regulation is making it more difficult for companies to succeed.
“There’s a lot of regulation already and that regulation that we have is getting more intense right now. Then there’s going to be newly regulated markets. So, I think what will happen is, as those markets regulate and as it becomes more intensive regulation, the small players are going to have a hard time, because it’s a big money game, and they’ll look to close, to raise and invest tons of money, or sell.”
Other trends he expects to see relate specifically to the attention span of consumers. This is an important piece of advice he would like to share, as he wants all competitors to understand that the more players enjoy games, the more likely they are to continue to stay in the market.
“Attention spans are short so, if you create a complex game, it better be hidden. It can be complex, but it better be simple to play. The iPhone is complex, but it’s simple to use. It’s got to be independently fun and enjoyable for players.”