It may be happy days reunion for PUBG players and fans in India dealing with the ban on the multi-player action game as it may soon be a Reliance Jio game.
How? Well, PUBG Corporation, the unit of a South Korean company behind PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds (PUBG), may team up with Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Jio to resume operations in India.
Can Reliance Jio be a potential partner for PUBG?
The gaming major is reportedly in talks with Reliance Industries Ltd's (RIL) telecom arm to win it over as a potential publisher and distributor in the country.
The hugely popular multiplayer game currently reels under a blanket ban in the Indian market and talks are rife that discussions between the two companies have reached a stage where they are negotiating revenue sharing and localisation.
However, no official statement has yet been given out by either PUBG or Reliance Jio.
Under the partnership, Jio users who register for PUBG Lite will reportedly be awarded exclusive rewards. Back in 2019, Jio and PUBG entered into a partnership whereby Jio users were receiving rewards for buying in-game merchandise.
Reliance Jio-PUBG partnership: a win-win situation?
The coming together of Reliance Jio and PUBG can be a mutually beneficial association. While PUBG will get hold of one of its largest markets, Reliance will tap into the huge potential it sees in the online gaming market in India. Mukesh Ambani had said in February this year that going forward online gaming would be bigger than most entertainment mediums in the country.
Speaking to Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella in a fireside chat at the Future Decoded CEO Summit in Mumbai, Ambani said how he sees a huge potential for gaming to grow in India, adding that "gaming will be bigger than music, movies and television shows put together."
Although the industry is still in an incipient stage, the RIL chairman expressed that he sees a huge potential for growth given the growing number of internet and mobile users in India.
Reliance Jio had in 2019 announced its Jio Fiber set-top box to support console-like gaming, stating that it will facilitate newer entertainment and gaming experience.
Displaying the gaming capabilities of its Jio Set Top Box, Akash Ambani and Isha Ambani, Directors of Reliance Jio said that it will be at par with the leading gaming players globally. With such a vision about the growth potential of the online gaming industry in the Indian market, don't be amazed if PUBG and Reliance Jio make the big announcement soon.
India a potential market for PUBG
According to a Sensor Tower report, PUBG has over 175 million installations from India comprising 24 per cent of the total installations worldwide.
The estimates clearly demonstrate that India is a huge market for the multiplayer game. India has severely dented the future earnings potential of Chinese apps, including PUBG, by banning them from the country, as it is currently the second largest app download market in the world.
However, despite a large user base and the most number of game downloads, India doesn't even figure among the top 10 revenue generators for PUBG.
The country's revenue share vis-a-vis other large gaming nations like the US, China, Japan or South Korea was always miniscule.
But with the ban on it, PUBG has lost on the future potential and promise India holds as it is one of the fastest growing gaming markets in the world. As future growth is to come from India, not having a presence in its market will impact PUBG.