To help celebrate five years of the App Store, Apple recently launched an iTunes promotion wherein a number of popular iOS apps were made available as free downloads. One such app was Infinity Blade II, an extremely popular and critically acclaimed gaming title which normally sells for US$6.99.
If there's one thing we can all agree on, it's that people love "free." To that extent, AllThingsD reports that Infinity Blade II saw an absolutely huge influx of new users thanks to Apple's App Store promotion.
The action-RPG sword-fighting game added 5.7 million new players in seven days. Laura Mustard, publicist for the game's developer, Chair Entertainment, said 1.7 million downloads occurred on Monday, the first day of the promotion.
Those new downloads, three times what the iOS-exclusive IB2 gets in a normal week, amount to a short-term spike that could pay off big in the long term.
So just how will Chair Entertainment benefit from giving away its app for free to 5.7 million users?
Well, if you've ever taken a gander at the list of top grossing iOS apps, you undoubtedly noticed that many of them are actually free to download. As it turns out, there's a lot of money to be had via the freemium model whereby users can download an application for free, but fork over cash for additional features and / or functionality.
What's more, opening the door to so many new customers also caused a spike in the original Infinity Blade, which, according to Chair Entertainment publicist Laura Mustard, saw 2.5 times as many downloads as it did in the preceding week.