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Electronic Arts chief operating officer Peter Moore thinks publishers who don't start looking at games as a service are in for a rude awakening. With more content being delivered digitally and revenues coming from account-based services, he told Eurogamer EA has elected to get out in front of games as a continued relationship with consumers.
"We think of ourselves less as a peer to our good friends at Take-Two, Activision and Ubisoft and more as a peer, quite frankly, to the service companies like Facebook, Google, Apple and Amazon," he said.
While EA used to let retailers handle issues like faulty game discs, Moore said digital transactions across the consoles, mobile devices, and EA's own Origin service have put the company in direct contact with consumers across the world all day, every day. Its customer service department handles more than 20 million contacts every year.
EA hired hundreds and invested millions in a new customer service center in Galway, Ireland to better maintain its relationship with consumers. Moore said many of the contacts need help with issues like downloadable content and achievements not showing up.
"My message to my peers in the publishing industry, if you're not doing this and you haven't done this already, you're probably already late in getting yourself ready for this next evolution of the industry … This is what you have to do, otherwise I don't think you can take money from a consumer for some kind of a service or a subscription or microtransactions, being trusted with their credit cards directly, and not have this level of quality and quantity of service on a global basis."