As you may or may not know, yesterday was the keynote speech for the launch of Microsoft's new foray into the global smartphone market with the much anticipated and long overdue launch of the Windows Phone 7 mobile operating system.
Pulling off many of the usual expectations of a smartphone device, Microsoft has one trick up it's sleeve which it hopes will give it a massive 'one up' on Apple's iOS4 and Google's Android. How does mobile access to Xbox LIVE sound, complete with ability to earn achievements whilst on the move?
Microsoft are raising the mobile gaming stakes with a bid to use their achievements system to leverage more market share for themselves. To help them in their bid EA Mobile have been signed up to publish games for the Windows Phone 7 platform and the myriad of devices from LG, Samsung and HTC among others, which will form the portfolio for customers to choose from.
EA’s games for Windows Phone 7 will be Xbox LIVE-enabled, featuring the unique ability to track and share scores with leaderboards, unlock Xbox LIVE Achievements, add to your Gamerscore, and communicate with your Xbox LIVE friends across Xbox 360, Windows-based PC and Windows Phone 7.
Travis Boatman discussed what it meant to EA to be asked to be so closely involved with Microsoft's push into the world of smartphones, with the advertisment price tag alone amounting to an estimated half a billion dollars out of Microsoft's pocket.
Our collaboration with Microsoft brings EA’s world-class catalog of global game franchises to Windows Phone 7, offering a unique set of gaming features perfectly suited to the deep, innovative experiences we value at EA. We see consumers deeply integrating devices into their lives and entertainment in new ways every day. Challenging your Xbox LIVE friends to an EA game from the phone in your pocket keeps you connected and having fun no matter where you are.
EA are set to deliver a range of titles at launch, with something to appeal to most:
“Need for Speed™ Undercover.” Power 20 of the world’s hottest high-performance cars through 24 undercover missions and eight challenging modes of thrilling action. Customize your vehicle and earn performance upgrades as you race head-to-head, earn achievements and track leaderboards.
“Tetris®.” Play the best-selling blockbuster, all new for Windows Phone 7. Play up to 12 challenging variants and become a “Tetris” master, or enjoy the timeless fun of Marathon mode, loved by hundreds of millions worldwide. Challenge your Xbox LIVE friends to beat your top score in single-player Marathon mode, the variant that made the “Tetris” game a phenomenon.
“The Sims™ 3.” Savor hours of entertainment with this award-winning experience of the No. 1 best-selling PC franchise of all time. Choose from dozens of personality traits and make your Sims characters neurotic, funny or shy while drawing from a wide array of built-in theme sets to bring your Sims to life with any appearance, clothing, and accessories you choose. Complete goals, wishes and personal goals while unlocking achievements and scoring Gamerscore points.
“MONOPOLY.” Fans will enjoy classic “MONOPOLY” play in the 75-year tradition of the world’s favorite family game brand,* under license from Hasbro Inc. Take a ride on the Reading Railroad or buy Boardwalk as you collect achievements and climb the leaderboards. From Marvin Gardens and Water Works to Park Place, own and manage the famous holdings of the “MONOPOLY” game board, which comes to life with animated tokens and interactive features for Windows Phone 7.
If you missed the keynote, and would like to see highlights including information on the inclusion of Xbox LIVE on Windows Phone 7 devices, there is a highlights package available below.