Epic Games announced the acquisition of SuperAwesome, a pioneer in the kid tech market, providing children with safe digital experiences and age-appropriate advertising. The terms of the contract were not disclosed.
The move comes a day after Epic announced its $ 15 million investment in Manticore, which has created a platform for anyone to develop games on. And today’s announcement shows that Epic is not slowing its fast pace of business – despite being in an antitrust case with Apple over App Store policies.
“We want children to have safe digital experiences everywhere,” said Dylan Collins, CEO of SuperAwesome, in an interview with GamesBeat.
Epic Games and SuperAwesome are jointly planning to build a wide range of child-safe services. The Kids Web Services (KWS) platform is a parental consent management toolkit that makes it easier for developers to tailor their experience to young users.
The SuperAwesome products comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in Europe and have been certified by the Safe Harbor programs of the KidSAFE and Entertainment Software Ratings Board for the protection of children. With AwesomeAds, developers can offer child-safe monetization in their products. SuperAwesome technology enables more than 12 billion digital transactions with children under the age of 13 every month.
Epic Games is the maker of Fortnite, the most popular battle royale game, as well as the Unreal Engine (used by more than 11 million developers). Fortnite has more than 350 million accounts and 2.5 billion friendships. SuperAwesome’s technology could work with Fortnite, but the real intent is to enable it for Unreal developers, Epic’s Todd Rowe said in an interview with GamesBeat.
To use SuperAwesome, parents must provide their identity and give a child permission to use a service.
Usually, many games and apps are just not intended for children. However, for apps aimed at children, developers are prohibited from collecting personally identifiable information and require some kind of parental consent.
“When you think of the Internet, it was essentially designed by adults for adults,” said Collins. “Now we have an internet with … children under the age of 16.”
“The ecosystem has expanded with more and more privacy laws for children,” said Collins. “Epic is very focused on privacy in everything they do. We saw a growing consensus with them about the future of the internet and the importance of children, family and privacy. The mission to make the internet safer for children continues. “
SuperAwesome has raised more than $ 35 million to date and employs 160 people. Investors include Mayfair Equity Partners, Microsoft and Hoxton Ventures.
SuperAwesome also has the technology to scale beyond the children’s market and apply its privacy technology to the larger adult market. SuperAwesome can help Epic get further into advertising. But Epic has no plans to run ads in Fortnite, Rowe said.
“It’s more for the developers using the Unreal engine,” Rowe said.