” It’s encouraging to see more initiatives that promote inclusion and diversity in India’s gaming, ” Yashashvi Takallapalli, VP & GM, Nostra
” It’s encouraging to see more initiatives that promote inclusion and diversity in India’s gaming, ” Yashashvi Takallapalli, VP & GM, Nostra – Nostra (formerly known as Glance Gaming), a division of consumer technology company Glance, gained massive popularity over the past few months, making it India and Southeast Asia’s largest mobile gaming platform. In an exclusive Interview with InsideSport, gaming, ” Yashashvi Takallapalli, VP & GM, Nostra shared everything about its growth and beyond.
Here are the excerpts of the interview.
Can you walk us through Nostra’s journey, and insights on platform’s current growth and trends?
Nostra is a mobile gaming platform from Glance, a consumer technology company that has revolutionized the way content is experienced on the lock screens of Android smartphones. Nostra’s vision is to develop a single destination for gaming globally with a wide array of experiences for every gamer, who can discover, play and watch games, and connect and compete with fellow gamers. Nostra currently has over 400 game titles across 15 categories.
In 2023, Nostra plans to introduce 600 new games, taking the total number of titles to over 1000. Esports and live streaming is a key vertical for Nostra and we have 50 live streams daily across 20 games. In fact, in just the second half of 2022, more than 10 major esports tournaments were shown on Nostra platform. Some of these include Valorant, Free Fire Max, Pokemon, FIFA and Mobile Legends among others.
We recently surpassed 75 million monthly active users (MAUs) for online gaming and of this, 25 million monthly active users enjoy live game streaming on the platform. This makes us the largest mobile gaming platform in India and Southeast Asia. Our goal is to reach 200 million monthly active users globally by 2024, and we intend to expand to new device surfaces and global markets in order to achieve this.
Read More: PUBG Mobile Fifth Anniversary: Level Infinite releases a new PUBG Mobile Redeem code where players can claim in-game rewards for free
Please give us insights on women users and game streamers on Nostra.
At Nostra, women have been central to our growth and will continue to be so. 60% of our game streamers and 47% of our users are female. These women, who belong to the age group of 18 to 50 and come from Tier I, II, and III markets, defy long-held beliefs that the gaming industry is dominated by men.
It isn’t anymore, and we are incredibly proud to have contributed to making this change possible. Our female consumers like playing a range of games, with board games, card games, and puzzles being their top choices. Also, women spend on average 15 minutes per day using the service.
In terms of women streamers, 60% of our game streamers are women. Every streamer undergoes a rigorous assessment before being onboarded and there are absolutely no gender biases involved. However, as the platform has evolved and our user base is growing steadily, we are consciously concentrating on our female game broadcasters and making sure they not only have a wonderful time streaming on the platform but are also developing professionally as the platform has expanded and our user base is continually expanding.
Most of our streamers are between the ages of 21 and 25, therefore we provide numerous training programmes on game streaming, boost their profile by bringing in brand partnerships, equip them to be emotionally strong and resilient, and provide them with round-the-clock technical support.
Nostra is a family-safe environment with zero-tolerance for abuses and bullying. We have dedicated teams to moderate content on all channels while they stream among others. These initiatives help in ensuring longevity of streamers on the platform and enable their overall growth which is crucial for the gaming ecosystem to be inclusive for all.
How do you see the role of women evolve in India’s gaming and game streaming ecosystem in the future?
Women now make up a larger percentage of the gaming and game streaming industry in India than they did only a few years ago. The role of women in this field will develop and grow as the sector continues to flourish.
The fact that more women are becoming interested in gaming and game streaming as a career choice and, as a result, more tournaments for women are being held, is one important reason influencing this increase. President Droupadi Murmu visited the first-ever all-female Valorant competition at the recently concluded India Gaming Expo in Pragati Maidan to encourage female gamers to have great dreams. Increasingly, more women are shattering the glass ceiling and esports unlike traditional sports is physically less demanding and offers a more level playing field where women can compete with men.
The Esports Federation of India now also has a special qualification round for women CS Go teams in the National Esports Championships Qualifications for 2023. It’s encouraging to see more initiatives that promote inclusion and diversity in India’s gaming and game streaming industries, as this is a step in the right direction.
Has Nostra taken any measures to make its platform more friendly and safe, particularly for women game streamers?
Nostra has undertaken several measures that ensure our platform is always friendly and safe for all our users and streamers, particularly women. We have built a dedicated team of moderators who work alongside our streamers real-time, keep a watch on all comments that are coming their way, and only publish relevant comments that can elevate the game and experience, for the streamer and everyone. This has ensured emotional wellbeing of our streamers and they enjoy and focus more on the game.
This year, we also started Nostra Gaming Week, a week-long gaming festival where esports teams from across the country will get an opportunity to compete across multiple popular games. Nostra Gaming Week takes place every month, and gives an equal opportunity irrespective of age, gender, popularity to come, compete and learn with fellow gamers, and grow one’s skills.
Do you feel there are certain barriers for women in the gaming ecosystem? If yes, please explain and tell us what changes can be made/introduced to reduce these biases.
Gaming and game streaming for long has been a male-dominated world. However, the pandemic and easy low-cost access to data has enabled a beautiful shift in the ecosystem. According to recent reports by Lumikai, 40 per cent of India’s gamer population is women. In 2022, our gaming market was valued at $2.6 billion, and this is estimated to increase to roughly $8 billion over the next four to five years. This is crucial, and women are essential to fostering this expansion.
Women face several obstacles in the gaming industry. But we also notice a shift there. However, this shift needs to pick up pace, and for that, all important ecosystem players must work together as well as each do their part, individually.
Removing biases when choosing game streamers and relying only on their talent, paying everyone equally regardless of gender, and providing support like monitoring broadcasters’ live content feeds are all small but important actions that can enhance the business. Developers can expand their horizons to include creating games that are more geared towards female players and implementing design modifications to make games more welcoming to women.
Game developers also must look at introducing more female avatars and characters within their game in a non-stereotypical manner. Often female characters are scantily clad and objectified. While there are a lot of battle games with gore and violence, there need to be more simulation games that are developed where women can compete and excel as well. There should be more women-only events where players can refine their skills. Finally, stakeholders should encourage more women to pursue careers in gaming and related fields, whether as developers, designers, voice actors, marketers, or in other fields. In conclusion, we must take action to see women from all perspectives.
In conclusion, we must take action to see women across the gaming ecosystem. Gaming is already widely popular. Yet women can further accelerate its rise.
Read More: International Women’s Day 2023: Prominent Female Personalities from Indian Esports Industry extend wishes on the special occasion