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Tencent Removes DnF Mobile from Huawei, Oppo, and Vivo App Stores Amid Dispute

Tencent's decision to withdraw DnF Mobile from the Huawei, Oppo, and Vivo app stores shows an ongoing conflict between large game producers and distribution channels. This action could have an influence on the domestic video game industry, which is already recuperating from regulatory hurdles. Tencent has removed DnF Mobile from the Huawei, Oppo, and Vivo app stores.

Dungeon & Fighter Mobile
Credit: SCMP

This shift occurs less than a month after the game's release, when the contracts with these suppliers expired.

According to a message issued by the game's operations team, DnF Mobile will no longer be available on these Android platforms from Thursday. A report by Chinese media outlet 21st Century Business Herald, citing anonymous sources, revealed the affected app shops, which included Huawei, Oppo, and Vivo.

To lessen the impact on new users, the DnF Mobile team has recommended downloading the game from its official website, as they are making "adjustments to our cooperation with certain app stores." This will allow gamers to complete a large update slated on Thursday via the game's app.

Tencent has yet to react to demands for comment about this development. The withdrawal of DnF Mobile from Android devices marks the latest confrontation between large game producers such as Tencent and mainland distribution networks. Tencent, which runs the world's largest video gaming business by revenue, has been at odds with distribution channels as gamers focus on a small number of popular titles.

Dungeon & Fighter Mobile
Credit: SCMP

This disagreement came to light on January 1, 2021, when Huawei announced the withdrawal of Tencent's mobile games from its app store, shocking netizens given Huawei's 43% share of the domestic smartphone market at the time.

However, the games reappeared on Huawei's app store a few hours later, with both parties saying that the matter had been settled through "friendly negotiations." Neither Huawei nor Tencent provided any further explanation. App store operators in mainland China frequently take up to 50% of a video game's earnings as commission, therefore the removal of popular titles like DnF Mobile from various app shops has caused concern in the domestic video gaming sector. This industry is already working to regain traction following a governmental crackdown on the internet sector.

DnF Mobile has been a runaway hit in Apple's mainland China App Store, exceeding the daily revenue of Tencent's flagship titles, Honour of Kings and Peacekeeper Elite, on its second day of domestic release last month, according to data from Chinese app analytics company Qimai.

According to a recent note from investment bank Jefferies, DnF Mobile is expected to produce around 6 billion yuan (US$827 million) in revenue within a year of its May 21 launch.

The mobile version of Dungeon & Fighter Online, a personal computer game created by Nexon subsidiary Neople, provides a much-needed boost to Tencent's video gaming business on the mainland, which witnessed a 2% year-on-year drop in first-quarter revenue to 34.5 billion yuan.

  • Tencent's decision to remove DnF Mobile from the app stores of Huawei, Oppo, and Vivo highlights an ongoing dispute between major game developers and distribution channels.

  • This move could potentially impact the domestic video gaming industry, which is already recovering from regulatory challenges.

  • Tencent removes DnF Mobile from Huawei, Oppo, and Vivo app stores

Source: SCMP

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