TikTok plans to boost games on its platform, sources reveal

After dominating the short video market, TikTok may have plans to enter the gamer segment for good. According to sources familiar with the matter, the platform is carrying out tests in Vietnam so that its users can play directly from the app.

Admittedly, TikTok has already released some games like Disco Loco 3D and Garden of Good in the US. But a wider range of games would further increase its advertising revenue and make the more than 1 billion monthly active users spend more time on the platform.

First stop: Vietnam

The focus on Vietnam may seem strange, but it’s totally understandable. The country has a tech-savvy population and about 70% of citizens are under the age of 35 – a factor that has also attracted giants such as Facebook, YouTube and Google.

For this, the Chinese platform ByteDance will need a license to offer games on Vietnamese soil. That’s because local authorities restrict games that depict gambling, violence and sexual content. Fortunately, the planned games appear to be non-controversial.

But TikTok’s idea is also about releasing games more widely in Southeast Asia, some sources said. It is even possible that both movements occur already in the third quarter of this year.

Gamer market in the sights of TikTok

Two of the sources said the games will be based on ByteDance’s set of titles. A TikTok representative even revealed that the company has tested bringing out HTML5 games through partnerships with third-party studios, but it’s unclear what the strategy will be for that wider release.

“We are always looking for ways to enrich our platform and regularly test new features and integrations that add value to our community,” the company representative told Reuters.

The expectation is that the video platform will start with minigames with simpler mechanisms that require little gameplay time. But according to one of the people with direct knowledge of the matter, the company’s ambitions go further – which suggests more robust and complex titles in the future.

Solen Feyissa/Unsplash

The move would follow the example of Netflix, which has added several simpler games to its platform, but plans to bring higher-budget works to the streaming service. And it would also mean following in the footsteps of Douyin (Chinese version of TikTok), which has been offering games in the app since 2019.

The unfolding of events should come to light in the near future. But TikTok’s focus is clear on establishing itself as a major competitor in the gaming universe, which should attract more revenue to the platform and intensify ByteDance’s competition against Tencent.

Source: Reuters

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