Rod Humble Says Oculus Rift + Second Life Goes Public This Summer (Yay!) & New SL User Retention is 20% (Wha?)
All Things D has a very good interview with Linden Lab CEO Rod Humble, who offers at least two tidbits worth noting. First the Oculus Rift, which as I reported, Linden Lab is working to integrate with Second Life. Turns out, we will see the fruits of that work quite soon:
We have it up and running, and right now we’re working on usability. You need to integrate it with the Rift so you can look around and touch things. I think it’s late summer when it’ll be public. I’ve ridden on a train within Second Life with the Oculus Rift on, and it’s very cool.
Emphasis mine, because, whoa. Another point makes me scratch my head instead, because Mr. Humble has it that 20% of Second Life's 400,000 new users every month log at least once again:
How many people get over the first hurdle and find that something [interesting in SL]? It’s usually about 20 percent are going to be around a month afterward. That’s a massive drop-off, but it’s still not too bad compared to other services.
To me, that just deepens the mystery of Second Life's lack of user growth. Based on Linden Lab's own stats, monthly active users have remained at 600,000 for the last few years:
And while the company now reports 1 million monthly users, 400,000 of them are new sign-ups – and almost all of them give up after the first try. So the real user base is not that different than it was five years ago, when Second Life had about 550,000 active users.
So if 80,000 of those 400,000 are retained every month, how come the monthly active user base hasn't grown since 2008? Unless, I guess, if around that number of existing active users go dormant every month. But that's hard to believe too. Help me out, NWN readers, what am I missing?
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