Archive | April 27, 2013

Epic Games marketing chief leaves for Microsoft

Gears of War and Unreal Engine studio Epic Games will move forward Wow Gold without its top marketing person. Kendall Boyd has left the company after three years and will take on a similar role at Microsoft, where he will head up marketing efforts for the Halo brand.

“We can confirm that Kendall Boyd has joined Microsoft Studios as Director of Halo Global Marketing,” A Microsoft spokesperson told Games Industry International. “We’re thrilled to welcome him into the Halo fold, but have no other details to share at this time.”

Boyd’s exact title at Epic Games was director of marketing for worldwide studios. In the role, he oversaw the marketing of top-line franchises like Infinity Blade and Gears of War, as well as the Unreal Engine. Boyd was also responsible for establishing and maintaining marketing relationships with clients like Microsoft, Electronic Arts, and Apple.

An Epic Games representative acknowledged Boyd’s departure in a statement to Games Industry International, but did not detail its plans for the position moving forward.

Numerous high-profile personnel have left Epic Games in the past year, including design director Cliff Bleszinski, president Mike Capps, Gears of War executive producer Rod Fergusson, and People Can Fly co-owner and creative director Adrian Chmielarz.

Chinese Internet company revealed last month that it paid $330 million for 40 percent ownership of Epic Games and had appointed to representatives to the company’s board.


GateGuru Relaunches With New Ways To Streamline Your Travel Experience

Founded by Dan Gellert and Jeff Arena, Time Warner Ventures and Yahoo! alums respectively, GateGuru is second behind TripIt in terms of users and downloads. The app helps you build itineraries with simple input methods including selecting flights by number or even emailing itineraries into the program. Once you’ve set up your itinerary, the company makes money by pitching last minute car and hotel rentals on the fly – and unobtrusively – while you slog through the supreme indignity of modern travel.

Gellert sees the app as “day of travel” assistant. “We have a lot of unique data in our product such as airport amenity information, TSA wait times, airport tips, maps, etc. For these reasons, as a day-of travel solution, the GateGuru experience blows away that of any of these guys,” he said.

They have raised $1.3 million to date from Amol Sarva, Matt Daimler, Tom Glocer, and others. They are currently seeing 140,000 users per month with 1 million downloads.

The inspiration for the service came when Gellert and Arena spent most of their time traveling yet remained confused about where to eat in airports and which security lines were shortest. “Somehow there was a complete black hole of information for the traveler. Simple things like: ‘Should I eat before or after security?,’ ‘How long is the security wait time?’, ‘Is my flight delayed or on time?’ often couldn’t be answered. I felt like there needed to be a seamless solution to give travelers knowledge about this entire experience; to put the power back in the hands of the traveler.”

“From there, it has been off to the races in going from Yelp for the airport into our larger vision which is reinventing the entire day-of travel experience,” he said.

The team is planning further improvements, including a true “virtual assistant” feature that should make traveling a bit more bearable.

“We will get to the point in the next 12 – 18 months where we can say ‘John – we know you are driving out to SFO, and based on traffic, airport parking availability, security wait times, your walk to your gate and flight status, you should leave for the airport in 30 minutes’ – regardless of if that is 2 hours or 4 hours before your flight,” he said. “This is a big change from the anxiety filled experience of walking through the airport glass doors only to find the place mobbed, resulting in you potentially missing your flight.” The data comes from collections of information including TSA checkpoint wait times and airport maps.

Whether GateGuru becomes a key part of your travel process or just another app that sits in that little folder on my phone labelled Travel and contains Kayak, TripIt, (Wow Gold Kaufen) Shazam, andRideTheCity remains to be seen. However, these lads do have promise.