Every once in a while, as Dean Kamen points out; a new technology, an old problem, and a big idea turn into an innovation. Around two years ago Arjun Rao, MD, Isle of Fortune and his wife discovered the joy of playing quiz apps. It had them competitively engaged and captivated. The one factor lacking though, was no gratification in terms of reward or a potential motivation to play on. Enter – Arjun’s one of its kind quiz app Isle of Fortune; a game not based on chance, like others, but on the contrary, one that tests domain knowledge, skill, and speed; and the world’s first reward-based quiz app to offer cash rewards!

Exploration is the engine that drives innovation. Innovation drives economic growth. So let's all go exploring

  • Edith Widder

An avid sales and marketing specialist, Arjun’s expertise has touched the sports, entertainment, and now the mobile gaming industry over the past 17 years. An entrepreneur at heart, he constantly searches for stimulating prospects in these fields, where he can enhance an asset while discovering new insights. “I loved the challenge presented by planning a concept right up to its eventual execution. With events for stars like the Whose Line improv comedians Colin Mochrie, Brad Sherwood, and Wayne Brady to Hollywood star Rob Schneider in comedy, several international bands across Jazz, Blues, and Rock, and even the new avatar of sports leagues - one of the most challenging markets - it is easy to say that events get my blood flowing faster.”

Without tradition, art is a flock of sheep without a shepherd. Without innovation, it is a corpse
-Winston Churchill

We all love to play games that test our skills and knowledge, but the experience is limited to the number of times we play and there is no tangible reward. Yet. Isle of Fortune is the world’s first mobile quiz game that rewards players’ knowledge and aptitude with cash prizes. To win, a user plays a quiz that has 10 questions and the user with the highest score in a pre-defined time wins the award. Within the ‘Isle of Fortune’ app, players have the opportunity to play two formats of quizzes to win. “The first mode is a daily free quiz wherein the user with the best score of the day emerges as the winner. This quiz runs for 24 hours starting at 00:01 hours GMT every day and ending at 23:59 hours GMT on that same day. The reward for the Isle of Fortune game is a cash prize of $100 or its local equivalent,” explains Arjun. “The second mode is the Grand Game. This is a weekly quiz bonanza. The user with the best score of the week in answering the quiz, emerges as the winner. This quiz runs weekly starting from 00:01 GMT every Monday and ends at 23:59 hours GMT on the Sunday of the same week in a Monday to Sunday cycle. The reward for the Grand Game is a cash prize of $1000 or its local equivalent. There are lifelines, much in the same fashion as those seen on the TV show KBC that adds an element of strategy into the game. We’ve found that it’s a format that keeps players constantly engaged.”

You've got to start with the customer experience and work backwards to the technology

  • Steve Jobs

History proves that innovation isn’t present only when there is a reward. It breathes in an atmosphere where varied perspectives can link and flourish. In an industry like mobile gaming, it is challenging to predict trends. “However, we do note that all apps focus on the end user and improve the entire experience,” points out Arjun. “With augmented reality and virtual reality, mobile gaming has gone the extra mile to change the way apps interact with the user. Those are areas in which we are looking to create a truly unique involvement for the user. Hence, I feel innovative disruption is the key to success in today's business ecosystem.”

No one can doubt the huge marketing advantage that a reward-based business model has. Firstly, having positioned themselves empirically as the ultimate game of knowledge and skill, which is borne out of the fact that they offer cash prizes to winners, Isle of Fortune will target everyone who loves to compete in a global format and in particular, quiz aficionados and trivia buffs. Secondly, it earns through ad revenues from both quizzes and in-app purchase options from ‘The Grand Game’. Thirdly, going forward, there is the opportunity to create bespoke content for sponsors and bring in interested brands to pass on specific messaging, among other avenues.

If your business isn’t mobile friendly, your business is dead
– Jonathan Stark

Newzoo’s quarterly update of its Global Games Market Report shows that mobile is the most lucrative segment, with smartphone and tablet gaming growing 19% year-over-year to $46.1 billion, claiming 42% of the market. Asia-Pacific is by far the largest region so far, with India’s mobile gaming market poised to top $400 million by 2022 states another report. The number of mobile gamers in the country is also expected to grow substantially from 198 million in 2015 to 628 million by 2020 and further to 1.16 billion by 2030.

It is thus no wonder that while Isle of Fortune is a Singapore based company, Arjun feels India is one of their key markets given the opportunity it presents to the mobile gaming sector. “This is the most fitting time to function in India with the growing number of smartphone users and booming internet growth,” deems Arjun. India’s smartphone population is roughly 416 million and therefore is one of the priority markets. Isle of Fortune will always have the advantage, being the first to start out in this genre. “Out of the global active mobile social user base of approximately 3 billion people, we will initially target 100 million users across the globe. During our initial phase, the global marketing strategy will be focussed on 20 countries. However, the app is available in over 50+ countries.”

‘Does it better’ will always beat ‘did it first’
– Aaron Levie

Looking at the near future, Isle of Fortune would like to firmly establish themselves as a prime mover in the quizzing/knowledge domain. “We would like to achieve widespread adoption and downloads across our markets, and are currently targeting 10 million downloads as our first milestone for achievement,” reveals Arjun. Isle of Fortune has also been working on some very unique ideas for the tourism sector, the education sector, and in general quizzing; concurrently using their developed algorithms and technology. “I would ideally like to launch a significant initiative of substantial scale every year and that is what we are working toward over the next few years,” adds Arjun.

Quizzing became a household name in the early 80s and 90s in India with quizzing shows. Corporate and pub quizzes soon followed. Fast forward 30 years and we now have a quizzing app that manages to differentiate itself and create something sustainable. Innovation truly is the calling card of the future.




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