EA Origin’s first year "a huge success"

A year after EA first unleashed its digital download service Origin, the company’s senior VP of global e-commerce David DeMartini has christened its first 12 months as a huge success”.

When you consider where we started from, which we kind of say was a standing start, we’ve got 12m downloads of the application,” he told GameSpot.

We have 50 partners: independent game developers and publishers who are publishing on the platform. We’ve generated over $150 million in revenue, which represents huge growth on a percentage basis versus the previous year. In every numerical dimension it was a huge success.”

However, the exec then indicated that the next 12 months will be one of growth and evolution for the network.

Last year was very much a foundational year for Origin. And this upcoming year we’re very excited because we’re going to start to draft some of those skill position players that are going to put a lot more sticky features on the Origin application,” he added.

The Origin feature-set last year was very foundational. When you start one of these services, you can’t leap to the glitzy features. You have to get the meat and potatoes down first.

I guess the analogy that I would use in the sports industry is if I’m starting a football team, I might draft a lot of offensive and defensive linemen and those aren’t the sexy positions, but if you want to have a really strong team, you’re gonna start with that foundation. And once you have that strong foundation you can get a bit more elaborate in some of the other positions.”

Top of the list of priorities will be giving customers more reason to return to the service, with DeMartini admitting that Origin currently lacks stickiness.

Being self-critical of Origin, I would say it’s not sticky enough. And we want to put features in place where we fully take advantage of your friends lists and gameplay activities amongst all of your friends so you can compare achievements,” he admitted.

We want you to be able to challenge your friends, and to challenge your friends to play other EA games to try and achieve things that might even be across EA games. A lot of people are loyal to us and we need to reward them with that stickiness, so we’re looking in that direction.”

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