The main players in the current smartphone market are Apple and Android. Each company has its own principles and strategies and there’s no sense in comparing them with each other. All we can do is to keep the track of their actions and make our predictions. At the moment I want to talk about the Android operating system and its opportunities of becoming the best mobile platform in terms of gaming.
Not in vain I talked about Apple at the beginning, as it’s currently offering most of the mobile popular gaming abilities. It comes to Game Center, which is Apple’s gaming service and is included in iOS starting from September, 2010. Moreover, iDevices also have OpenFeint, a social platform and application for the iOS recently available for Android as well. Despite its popularity Game Center is not devoid of defects, and Android can seize this good opportunity and leave Apple behind. So let’s see which Google’s main mistakes are in terms of developing Android as a gaming platform.
Firstly, Google must revise its pricing strategy, because unlike iOS games, the games developed for Android are usually very expensive. The prices for the majority of popular Android games make up around $2-$4, while the prices for iOS games make up an average of $1. Moreover, Android’s multiplatform games have very high prices –“Need For Speed SHIFT” is priced at $9.99 compared with iOS’ $4.99. In this regard, analysts think Google should try its luck working with publishers like EA Mobile to make the Android marketplace more competitive. The abovementioned doesn’t refer to all games, as there are several free ones, for example the Angry Birds. But that’s another story, folks.
Secondly, Google must pay more attention to the promotion of Android games. I’d say the tech giant is ignoring this, while it should be concentrated not only on developers, but also on the Google itself.
Thirdly, Android is an open-code platform with its cons and pros. Nevertheless, all similar platforms have the same problem — their app market is filled with fake apps and malwares. So Google must “clean” Android Market of such apps.
And lastly, gaming as a social experience is the future of game marketing, so Google must make a better marketplace and involve more developers. Unlike Apple, which offers one product in each sphere of tech market, this is something necessary for the company. Android devices are quite different and third party developers may solve the fragmentation problem.
We can talk for hours on what Google has to do, and all our suggestions can be right. But it’s Google’s philosophy that very often hinders the company itself. I mean Google always thought its every action should be transparent and every developer and user should have its role in its actions. This prevents Google from creating exclusive products. Though that said, I remember Minecraft was created solely for the Sony Ericsson Xperia Play. Yeees, this was the biggest exception of all phones. On the whole, this phone makes Android outstand — playing classic games is enjoyable due to the controller built in, though we can’t say the same about the touch-based games.
However, Google’s future in terms of gaming is bright. The Ice Cream Sandwich is being rolled out and in the near future, when all Android smartphones, tablets and other gadgets run on the same platform, it’ll make Google a king in the market. Developing games, which can be played on any device will definitely leave other manufacturers behind. Presently the company is considering whether to make an exclusive game service or to remain devoted its strategy “all for all.”
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