Last year, Facebook declared itself to be a mobile company, and for good reason. That is where the users, and the money, are going. Just look at the number it posted in its third quarter earnings: 874 million monthly active users on mobile. Mobile also accounted for nearly half of its advertising revenue. Those are some impressive figures.
So obviously the company wants to move all aspects of its business onto mobile, including gaming. That is where developers want to go, and that is where Facebook has to take them.
Which is why the software developer kit (SDK) for Facebook Unity, its game-creation tool, has come out of beta, the company announced on Thursday, in order to help make it easier to integrate with cross-platform games.
“The Facebook games team is focused on bringing high quality games to Facebook users,” Facebook games engineer Brian Jew wrote in a blog post.
“One way we’re doing this is by building tools to help developers provide social experiences in 3D games, like those built with Unity. We’ve made our SDK for Unity even easier to integrate with cross-platform games and added new features to help you grow your games.”
These new features include unified function and return call values across all supported platforms and increased compatibility for apps using multiple plugins.
Facebook also updated the Unity SDK with the latest features from the iOS and Android SDKs. That includes support for app events, which help developers measure the effectiveness of their mobile app advertisements.
Deep linking, "which takes people directly from social stories to a customized destination in your game" has also been enhanced. In addition, the SDK now gives users the ability to share screenshots with each other, something the site says is very popular among its gamers.
For example, Cmune's Uberstrike shares over 65,000 pictures a day, and has shared over two million in the last month.
The SDK was originally launched in August, and has now come out only two months later.
Developers want to be on mobile because that is where the eyeballs and dollars are going. And being on the Unity SDK has already been benefitial. One game increased its total daily players by over 75% for the first couple of weeks after using the SDK.
So if Facebook wants to lure them, it has to make sure that it is as easy as possible for them to develop on the platform.
(Image source: https://developers.facebook.com)