Tyche Shepherd’s weekly report of the size of the grid has revealed this week that we lost just ten private regions this week. One Linden region was added, making a net loss of just nine regions, the smallest fall in regions since the week ending June 24th, which was actually the last time we had growth in the number of regions on a weekly basis.
Now considering that this is a much smaller loss than recently, it could very well be an outlier, rather than an indication of a change in trend. Time will tell. The same can be said of the net loss of over one hundred regions reported on October 21st, that was much higher than usual trends and thankfully looks like an outlier, that was linked in with the Royal Properties estate going belly up.
Tyche has also reported the results of her October 2012 private estate survey, which is based on a random survey of 5,000 private regions to determine the results.
Of the regions Tyche surveyed, 2,399 were full regions, 1,911 were homstead regions and 25 were Openspaces …. people still have Openspaces? Unfortunately of the 5,000 regions Tyche surveyed, 665 were closed to public access. This represents 55.3% being full regions, 44.1% being Homesteads and 0.6% being Openspaces … seriously, people still have Openspaces? This is pretty much unchanged from last month.
Now the eye watering estimates of revenue from Tyche’s survey are that overall private estate tier each month stands at US$4,319,000 (+/- US$54,000). Tyche takes into account grandfathered rates but not any educational discounts. Tyche therefore estimates that this is a loss of around US$44,000 compared to last month, with monthly income down around one percent. This is due to a net loss of 228 private regions during this period.
In terms of Homesteads, Tyche reveals that the number of non-grandfathered regions seems to be down slightly, 15.6% of the regions Tyche surveyed were at a non grandfathered rate as opposed to 16.3% last month.
For more information such as who the top estate owners are, sensible analysis and lots more statistical goodness, go read Tyche’s post.
Now for my traditional tier is too high and Linden Lab need to generate more streams of income rant, however I’ve done that often enough so I’ll just get to the point, Linden Lab need to get creative in their pricing structure sooner rather than later!
However, as we can see from Tyche’s estimates, they’re still generating plenty of monthly income in private region tier, but the trend remains downwards, there’s no need for Linden Lab to panic at this stage but they should be thinking ahead. Tier is stifling for people who want to create roleplaying and community usage, it’s too expensive for people to engage in the main, there are successful use cases but close to three hundred bucks for a full region in this day and age is a price too high.
The problem Linden Lab have here is that monthly tier is still healthy, so I would not expect them to slash tier prices as that would hit their bottom line far more quickly than a steady erosion of customers, but by acting sooner rather than later they can generate further reach and slowly bring tier prices down if they can find either a successful alternative revenue stream or find that lowering tier brings in more customers, but a drastic price cut in the short term? I really don’t see that happening.