PUBG Corporation severing ties with Tencent may set a trend of gaming companies stepping out of Chinese shadow

If the decision by Krafton Game Union does allow PUBG to make a comeback into the Indian mobile gaming industry, the number of games having ties to Chinese organisations may see a drop. This may spell worry for Chinese firms such as Tencent if, following this decision, PUBG does really make a comeback into India.

Anand Krishnaswamy September 09, 2020 14:58:03 IST
PUBG Corporation severing ties with Tencent may set a trend of gaming companies stepping out of Chinese shadow

The most recent wave of bans for Chinese apps has included the extremely popular game Player Unknown's Battlegrounds, better known as PUBG. Following this, PUBG Corporation has decided to break their ties with Tencent for PUBG mobile in the Indian market.

For some time now, many countries have been raising doubts about the security of data with Chinese owned companies. These concerns have led to the ban of several Huawei products as most of these products are related to mobile network infrastructure. The countries that have enforced the bans on Huawei are UK, United States, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Germany, France, Italy, and Singapore.

India is looked at as a promising market for the gaming industry. In recent years, the industry within India has shown massive growth and the projections for future growth are even more promising. According to Statista.com, the gaming industry in India has grown from an estimated value of 24.5 billion rupees in 2015 to 62 billion rupees by 2019. The industry is further expected to be worth 250.3 billion rupees by 2024. If the estimation holds, this will be a growth of more than 1,000 percent in a span of nine years for the industry.

Most gaming-related companies across the world will be interested in claiming a share of this upcoming market. The Indian market has experienced the largest growth in the mobile gaming segment. There are a variety of factors that have contributed to this, such as the number of smartphone users, high penetration of mobile internet services, and low cost of mobile internet.

The Chinese games banned in India are all played on the mobile phone. Indian game developers have begun to act and are slowly becoming more active. According to Sensor Tower (an organisation specialising in making reports for the mobile app market), in June 2020, PUBG was the fifth most downloaded mobile game across iOS and Android. The removal of a popular game has opened up the market for competition.

This has been followed by the announcement for the launch of Fearless and United Guards (FAU-G) in October this year. This game has been developed by Indian video game developer nCOre games, based out of Bangaluru. The game is targeted as a direct replacement to PUBG, and will have its first level based on the Galwan Valley.

Following this announcement, South Korea-based Krafton Game Union-owned PUBG Corporation has decided to take over marketing for PUBG mobile for India. This can be considered an attempt by them to re-enter the Indian market. This move may be the start of a new trend within the mobile gaming segment. If the decision by Krafton Game Union does allow PUBG to make a comeback into the Indian mobile gaming industry, the number of games having ties to Chinese organisations may see a drop. This may spell worry for Chinese firms such as Tencent if, following this decision, PUBG does really make a comeback into India.

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