Facebook to reward gamers with virtual currency

Facebook virtual currency

Facebook is now letting game developers on its platform reward players who complete advertiser offers with in-game currency. Players who complete actions such as taking a survey or signing up for promotions can now earn virtual currency for their game of choice by doing so. The feature is not entirely new, with players previously able to earn Facebook Credits by complete advertiser offers. In a developer blog post, Facebook says the new functionality will provide an “additional source of revenue” to app developers. “Facebook gives users the ability to earn virtual currency by completing advertiser offers,” says software engineer Abhishek Dhosi. “For app developers, these offers can be a valuable additional source of revenue by helping them monetize users that may not otherwise pay for virtual currency.”

Although Facebook does not specifically state this, users who do already buy virtual currency could also potentially avoid paying for it by completing ad offers. However, Facebook claims that the rewards should actually help smaller developers make money from users who would otherwise never buy virtual currency. Incentivised rewards are already available to larger developers who committed to use Facebook Currency for five years in 2010, such as EA, Zynga, Crowdstar and RockYou.

Facebook has previously run into trouble when developers offered native game currency in return for ad offers, with many users fooled into clicking on untrustworthy or scam advertising provided through dubious ad networks. Although Facebook moved to regulate the area, it was eventually forced to introduce Facebook Credits in a bid to win back user trust – and take 30% of the multi-million dollar revenues that big-hitters such as Zynga were starting to rake in. In this case, all ads will be displayed through the Offerwall and DealSpot ad platforms, suggesting that Facebook is taking ad regulation much more seriously.

In-game spending is becoming an increasingly important part of the Facebook – and gaming – ecosystem, with more than two-thirds of players’ money spent on virtual goods, according to mobile ad network Flurry. The sale of virtual items in social games, including currency, is expected to generate USD792m this year in the US, according to separate stats from eMarketer, up 2.13% year on year.

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