The award winning Swedish studio Toca Boca recently reached the milestone of 100 million downloads after releasing over 26 apps.
Toca Boca is a company that mainly focuses on developing apps for kids, which has proven to be a highly successful endeavor.
“Reaching 100 million downloads in just four years speaks to the hard work of our team and the fact that both kids and parents recognize the quality of our products,” CEO Björn Jeffery says as the company celebrates the achievement. But how will the company proceed when they head for the next milestone?
“We’ll continue to make apps that kids love to play with, and we are as focused on the coming 100 million as the past. One new thing in our app development process is creating series of apps instead of individual releases,” Rebecca Crusoe, head of PR in the European division explains.
“For instance we’ll continue to build on the storytelling universe from Toca Life: City and Toca Life: Town. These digital toys encapsulate kids’ everyday lives and allows them to be the directors of their own adventures and stories,”Crusoe continues, before she elaborates that:
“From a development standpoint, this gives us a chance to create a sustainable concept and be able to focus on frameworks and systems. This means we can add more depth to each app and we’re happy to bring out new locations and features regularly, such as the chance to customize your character or to change between day and night.”
Toca Boca always develop their games from a kid’s perspective, which makes it easy for children to relate to Toca Boca’s products. To do this successfully, they test the apps extensively on children.
“Through our kids tests we make sure that our products are fun for kids to play with. Sometimes kids testing makes us realize that a product is not as engaging as we’d hoped, which highlights a need to change and tweak our concepts,” Crusoe explains.
“To us it is important to create products that kids love and that parents know they can trust.”, Crusoe says. And this priority of creating the best possible environment for kids to play in, meant that the company has felt they had to go premium.
“We have chosen to be a premium brand in a market where most products are “freemium”. We want the Toca Boca experience to be about pure, uninterrupted play, and therefore we don’t allow in-app purchases or third party ads in our apps. We know that kids don’t understand in-app purchases, and we don’t think they should be exposed to them either,” Crusoe says.
Moving towards the next 100 million downloads, Toca Boca plans to expand their endeavors into other mediums like tv and toys.
“We plan to remain a beacon for good quality kids content regardless of channel. We are currently starting up our own TV and video studio in New York, where we’ll create “TV you can touch” for the mobile-first generation,” Crusoe says, “We’re also looking further into physical products based on the Toca Boca values. We’ll continue to build our development teams in Stockholm too and are moving to new playful offices early 2016.”
In that sense, Toca Boca is following the likes of Angry Birds that has had a great deal of success selling toys and creating movies which expands the brand even further than the apps.