AT&T Inc., Microsoft Corp., HTC Corp. and I-play announced today the creation of the AT&T Game Development Contest for Windows Mobile to discover the next breakthrough mobile game. Windows Mobile games represent the fastest-growing segment of the AT&T gaming business. The AT&T Game Development Contest, launching May 1, is truly unique as it represents the first time all members of the mobile gaming ecosystem are collaborating in an effort to inspire the developer community to take mobile gaming applications to the next level.
In a May 2007 research report, Gartner Inc. forecast worldwide mobile gaming end-user revenue to reach $9.6 billion in 2011 -- up significantly from the $2.9 billion realized in 2006. Gartner attributes this projected growth in mobile gaming to consumer awareness and the increase in content being developed by gaming publishers. AT&T, which has the broadest portfolio of Windows Mobile phones of any U.S. carrier, currently offers more than 2,300 on-deck mobile games and is always evaluating innovative and entertaining gaming options to offer its 71 million-plus mobile customers.
"AT&T has a strong commitment to deliver more wireless choices to our customers -- in terms of products, services and applications," said Mark Collins, vice president, Consumer Data, for AT&T's wireless unit. "One way we reinforce this commitment and demonstrate that we are open to innovation is by working closely with the developer community so that we can bring visibility to their creativity, while ensuring that our customers have access to the most advanced, compelling and fun products and services -- now and in the future."
"We are happy to support this contest and encourage developers to take full advantage of our powerful, flexible platform, providing AT&T customers with new applications that can enhance their mobile experiences," said Scott Horn, general manager of the Mobile Communications Business, Microsoft Corp. "With such a broad portfolio of AT&T devices, Windows Mobile is ripe for developers looking to reach a mass audience with their products."
Don Ryan, senior vice president of I-play Publishing, said: "I-play's integrated support and close collaboration with the mobile games development community has helped fuel innovation and creativity since its inception in 1998, and so we are pleased to participate in such an imaginative relationship. With the recent consolidation of our publishing division, we can bring a new game to market across many popular consumer platforms, including Windows Mobile devices. We look forward to working with the winner and help bring their vision to the gaming public."
AT&T makes it simple for its millions of customers to discover, shop and play games directly from their phones:
* Look for the menu item called AT&T Mall or the MEdia Mall shopping bag icon.
* Select Shop Games; you will see a list of categories such as New Arrivals, Top Sellers and a variety of genres that you can browse to find the game you want.
* Select a game, then follow the prompts to purchase, download and install it onto your phone. (Standard data charges apply.)
* Start playing!
Beginning May 1, gaming developers can fill out the online entry form to submit their Windows Mobile compatible game. All game entries submitted during the next three months will be reviewed and judged based on the following criteria: game-play value and quality, game uniqueness and creativity, and marketplace potential. One grand-prize winner will receive a mobile game developer contract with I-play, prime placement of the finished game on the game portal on AT&T MEdia Mall and a cash prize of $25,000. Prizes will also be awarded to three finalists and 10 semifinalists. For complete contest details, contest entry and prize structure, visit http://developer.att.com/gamescontest. The deadline to submit an entry is July 31, 2008. The winner will be announced at CTIA Wireless I.T. & Entertainment 2008 in San Francisco.
(Source: "More Growth Ahead for Mobile Gaming." May 2007, Gartner, Inc.)