Report: Apple and Google battling for games exclusivity

HTC One BoomSound game

It’d be incredibly naive of us to believe that neither Google or Apple would be courting developers with lucrative kickbacks for exclusivity. We saw as much during the great Plants vs Zombies 2 debacle of 2013, where iPhone users enjoyed the game for a good two months before it stumbled its way over to Android. While Popcap, EA and Apple would refuse to make a comment or vehemently deny that any of this happened, it wouldn’t be hard to believe such a deal took place.

Things might be getting even more heated soon, though, with the Wall Street Journal reporting that Google and Apple are ramping up efforts to sway developers to launch games exclusively for their respective platforms.

Suggested benefits for developers would likely mean the game being prominently featured at the forefront of the App Store or Google Play, as well as a one-way fast pass to the top of whatever categories they belong in. And for really big titles? A bit of cash probably wouldn’t be too far out of the question, as well.

The claims don’t sound unsubstantiated, with top developer Gameloft’s head of sales and marketing suggesting they’ve discussed deals like this with Apple in the past. “We haven’t found the case where it makes sense for us,” said Gonzague de Vallois.

Indeed, a big publisher like Gameloft probably doesn’t need the help of Apple or Google to get their games front and center. For smaller independent developers, though, it’d be a hard offer to pass up.

This topic was one of taboo that incited controversy last year, but the reality is that times are changing. Major players like Amazon (and even smaller ones like OUYA) are coming in with set-top boxes and tablets, and aren’t above buying up or paying off studios to develop exclusive games for their platforms. Apple and Google would be fools to let any opportunity to gain exclusive content of their own pass by.

Exclusivity has been a staple trait the console gaming scene since its inception, and with mobile gaming taking the huge strides it’s taken in the past few years it’s not hard to believe we’re just reliving history. Time will tell if any of these developers decide to bite on offers from either side, but don’t be too shocked if (or when) it eventually happens.

Continue reading:

TAGS:



  • Jeff Moreira

    I wonder if Capcom has a deal with Apple.
    It’s the only major developer that doesn’t have any games available on Android.
    I’m not counting the ones only available in Japan (which are not many anyway) or those social ones made by Beeline.

  • effApple

    screw exclusive deals and those that support them!

    • Durin123

      Death to the enemies of freedom of access to games from multiple platforms!

  • http://www.colossaldamage.com/ SuperMarino

    Exclusive deals are evil for everyone. I get that some developers can’t afford to make both versions, but to to openly sign an exclusive agreement is awful. I also hate that most of the games I want to play are only on iPads where as I’m fully in the android camp for everything else, this would only make things worse. I don’t even want Google exclusive apps.

    • malcmilli

      they arent evil for start ups.

      • Durin123

        Not evil but the easy way out.

        • malcmilli

          lol yeah but its a business. As a business, especially as a struggling business where often times people arent getting paid or are working for pennies… the “Easy way out” is the quickest way to put make rent.

          • Durin123

            It’s true, unfortunately. Tens of millions of people don’t really have much money to spend on things besides the essentials.

  • Martin Lane

    It’s about time Google started encouraging game developers, iOS still has allot of good games we don’t have access to.

    Users may not like it but it has to be done or will forever be behind iOS when it comes to gaming.

  • No_Nickname90

    No!! I don’t want this to happen!! I hate it when I see cool games on iOS and I can’t play them. =.[

    Oh well… Business is business.

    *Sulking because I can’t play Killer Instinct unless I get an Xbox One*
    *There won’t be another Diddy Kong Racing*

  • guitarist5122

    Let apple waste their money on exclusive apps. Apps are not what drew me to android. And android devs will just create a spinoff version of an apple owned game anyways lol

  • ichuck7

    This wreaks of Apple evil. Shame on them.