Appysnap Returns To Take Second Bite At Photo-Sharing Fuelled Social Mobile Gaming

Appysnap is taking a second bite at the social gaming cherry. The first version of the photo-snapping challenge-based game for iOS launched back in 2011, and grew its usage to a peak of more than 100,000 photo submissions per month before its creators decided to shutter it, having run out of money bootstrapping.

Now they’re back — with a relaunched app — having attracted some external funding from Paul Nikkel, founder of cashback and voucher website Quidco, as well as putting in more of their own money. founder Kieron Donoghue has also joined the team as an advisor.

Social gaming is a fickle beast at the best of times, as OMGPOP‘s swift rise and abrupt fall illustrates. Casual mobile gamers get bored all too easily, and/or move on to the next fad. But Appysnap reckons it’s tapping into a more addictive type of digital behaviour than most by gamifying photo-sharing.

“We all know that photo apps like Instagram and Rando etc are huge but nobody has successfully applied ‘gamification’ to this space. Appysnap capitalises on the ease and simplicity that everybody enjoys with Instagram and adds a game layer on top. Think of challenge based games like Song Pop and Draw Something but with photos,” it tells TechCrunch.

Appysnap’s concept is pretty straightforward. Gamers are set photo-snapping challenges within the app. They can also create their own challenges for friends — adding an element of “virality” that the app makers hope will help it grow. That person-to-person challenge feature also sets it apart from competitor apps like SCVNGR, it says. In-app badges are another element of the gamification mechanic. While users can also easily  view all the snaps they’ve taken in a single screen view, building up their own in-app photo archive.

While the app is free to download the creators plan to monetise via in-app purchases such as mission packs and challenge ‘scrubs’ if you want to skip a particular challenge. In-app advertising is another revenue stream for Appysnap’s creators. Plus they are looking at sponsored missions — bringing retailers into the mix — having found, with version one of the app, that it was relatively easy to drive users to physical locations.

“In the last version of the app we asked users to take a photo of a coffee shop, 80% of the photos were of Starbucks. This was with no incentive other than gameplay.  I think that retailers will sponsor missions for a fee to get people through the door,” it adds. “We’ll be focussing more on this type of promotion going forward and working out commercial models for retailers to use Appysnap to drive footfall.”