Popular Browser Game 'Wordle' Sold to The New York Times, Will Remain Free 'Initially'

The New York Times today announced that it has purchased popular web-based game "Wordle" for low-seven figures. Created by Josh Wardle, Wordle has gained millions of users over the past several months and has become well-known on the internet thanks to its simple score sharing features and straightforward gameplay.

wordle
Wardle said in a January interview with TechCrunch that "part of the point" of Wordle was that it was free to play and that he had no interest in monetizing it, but at the time, he also said it would be "foolish" not to speak with those interested in investing in Wordle in some capacity.

The New York Times says that Wordle will be free to play for new and existing players "at the time it moves" over to the NYT site, but there is no word on whether it will be monetized and locked behind a paywall at a later date. Specific wording in a New York Times story says "the game would initially remain free to new and existing players," so the "initially" could imply future changes.

In a letter announcing the acquisition, Wardle said that he is working with The New York Times to ensure that wins and streaks will be preserved during the transition.

Wordle made headlines in early January because as it rose to popularity, multiple app developers attempted to capitalize on its success and created clone apps in the App Store. Wordle has always been a web-based browser game and is not available on iOS devices through an official app, so these clone apps capitalize on the Wordle idea and charging people money.

Apple ultimately decided to remove all of the Wordle clones that used the Wordle name from the ‌App Store‌, and to date, there have been no additional Wordle clones released for sale on Apple's platform. With Wordle now owned by The New York Times, we could possibly see an official Wordle app in the future as the NYT does already offer an app for its crossword puzzles.

Top Rated Comments

kylelerner Avatar
27 months ago
A P P L E
A D O R E
A D I E U

A D I O S
Score: 58 Votes (Like | Disagree)
GMcKenzie Avatar
27 months ago
Wow - good for Josh. Love to see creators getting paid :)
Score: 22 Votes (Like | Disagree)
canadianreader Avatar
27 months ago
Buy NYT subscription get Wordle for free *

* This offer is limited to new subscribers only
Score: 21 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jz0309 Avatar
27 months ago
Free? As mentioned here in other threads, when a company gives you something for “free” you become the product…
In this case it will start with having to register with you email and then the junk folder starts getting full…
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TestedLion Avatar
27 months ago

Lol.. I could code this game in a day. Im sure someone will just make another one when NYT inevitably ruins it. Dumb writers and dumb investors.
and yet, funnily enough, you didn't. This is the perfect example of opportunity and time. You didn't do this, someone else did. You didn't market this, someone else did.

The criticism which comes form hindsight is strange - it's always 20/20.
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Michael Scrip Avatar
27 months ago

Wordle was acquired for an undisclosed price in the low-seven figures.
So he's getting paid at least a million dollars for a gift he made for his girlfriend.

Best gift ever!

?
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

Beyond iPhone 13 Better Blue Face ID Single Camera Hole

Six Reasons to Wait for Next Year's iPhone 17

Thursday February 22, 2024 4:20 am PST by
Apple's iPhone development roadmap runs several years into the future and the company is continually working with suppliers on several successive iPhone models concurrently, which is why we sometimes get rumored feature leaks so far ahead of launch. The iPhone 17 series is no different, and already we have some idea of what to expect from Apple's 2025 smartphone lineup. If you plan to skip...
General Apps Messages

iOS 17.4 to Add This 'Groundbreaking' New Messaging Feature

Friday February 23, 2024 5:05 am PST by
With iOS 17.4, set to arrive in March 2024, Apple is bringing a new cryptographic security feature to iMessage called PQ3. This "groundbreaking" and "state-of-the-art" protocol provides "extensive defenses against even highly sophisticated quantum attacks," according to Apple. Let's break down what that means. Apple's iMessage service already supports end-to-end encryption, but security...
iPhone Notch

Apple Explored These Notch and Dynamic Island Designs for iPhones

Friday February 23, 2024 2:05 pm PST by
With the iPhone 14 Pro models in 2022, Apple introduced the Dynamic Island, which can morph and expand to display system alerts, sports scores, and a variety of other information. The feature makes the space surrounding the front camera and Face ID sensors useful compared to the notch on older iPhone models. Apple explored a variety of ideas for the iPhone's notch area over the years before...
New Macs iPads iOS 17 4

What to Expect at Potential Apple Event in March: iPads, Macs, and More

Friday February 23, 2024 8:35 am PST by
Apple often holds its first media event of the year in March, so the company could be just weeks away from announcing new products. Below, we have outlined what to expect from a potential Apple Event this March. Past Apple Events in March Apple has held five events in March since 2015:Monday, March 9, 2015 Monday, March 21, 2016 Tuesday, March 27, 2018 Monday, March 25, 2019 Tuesday,...
iOS 17

When Will Apple Release iOS 17.4 for iPhones?

Friday February 23, 2024 11:56 am PST by
Apple has been beta testing iOS 17.4 for nearly a month now. Below, we explain when the update is likely to be released to all users. In its press release announcing major App Store changes in the EU, which were implemented in response to new regulations under the EU's Digital Markets Act, Apple confirmed that iOS 17.4 will be released at some point in March:Developers can learn about these...
iOS 17

iOS 17.4 Coming Soon With These New Features for Your iPhone

Monday February 26, 2024 6:08 am PST by
In a press release last month, Apple confirmed that iOS 17.4 will be released in March, and the update includes several new features and changes for the iPhone. Key new features in iOS 17.4 include major App Store changes in the EU, Apple Podcasts transcripts, and an iMessage security upgrade. The update also adds new emoji and includes preparations for the launch of next-generation CarPlay...