Unity claims market milestone, talks next-gen 'light and fast' core, and using machine learning to maximise performance and revenue

At tonight's GDC keynote Unity revealed that over half of all new mobile games are now created on the platform - with Unity responsible not just for taking the majority of the market, but helping generate it. With CEO John Riccitiello said on stage that "The world is a better place with more creators in it."

He went on to show that 'Unity Developer' was now the 7th most desirable job title on Linkedin, displaying that those familiar with the platform have incredible job prospects.

Unity CEO John Riccitiello

Unity CEO John Riccitiello

Unity's GDC keynote was full of impressive technological demos it'll roll out over the coming year, but one key to boosting the sheer quantity of Unity projects was the platform embrace and 'light and fast' in order to better target the web market - both for playable ads and games in messaging (Facebook wasn't mentioned but surely that's the key target here).

Ralph Hauwert, director of platforms, said "light and fast is key to reaching to reaching the world's next one billion devices - entry level phones, IoT devices - but also the web."

He them demoed a playable advert for Space Ape's Fastlane. Which using Unity's new 72KB core runtime on web, combined with Unity-compressed assets, managed to more than half the size of the demo and reduce the 'from cold' startup time from 2.7s down to 1.3s.

Then Danny Lange, VP of AI and machine learning, added that there were over 50,000 smartphone models in use across the world. Targeting all those specifications is a potential headache, but that the new Unity Live Tune feature would adjust assets, effects and rendering in real-time to maximise performance.

Danny Lange, VP of AI and machine learning at Unity

Danny Lange, VP of AI and machine learning at Unity

According to Unity it saw a "33 per cent improvement in long-term retention" thanks to the technology in testing. Which would be incredible if proven correct.

Lange went on to talk about how machine learning could also match offers to players, saying: "Each person has their own combination of hardware, software, skills and interests, we want to give you the tools to create games that are deeply engaging for every player."

Unity knows that some players are simply never going to use in-app purchases (IAP) on certain titles. But its new technology would learn which player to offer IAP promotions to, when to instead promote a different title and when to use in-app advertising instead. With the algorithm learning to show the correct offer.

For more on the Unity keynote read our exclusive interview with founder and CTO Joachim Ante. And wherever you are check out Unity's boothless plans this week at GDC

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