RealTime IT News

Four Wireless Firms Form Mobile Gaming Forum

Betting that games will be a driving force behind the adoption of 3G technology, four of the biggest wireless technology players joined forces Tuesday to define a mobile games interoperability specification for network-based servers.

Building on the "Universal Mobile Games Platform" initiative launched in March by Ericsson, Motorola and Siemens IC Mobile, the Mobile Games Interoperability (MGI) Forum adds Finland's Nokia to the mix.

The four founding members said a specification will allow game developers to produce and deploy mobile games across multiple game servers and wireless networks, and enable them to be played over different mobile devices.

"Motorola strongly believes that the games and entertainment environment is key to the development of mainstream success in GPRS and 3G for operators, manufacturers and developers," said Tim Krauskopf, vice president and general manager of Core Solutions for Motorola's Internet Software and Content Group. "As a result, we are firmly committed to the MGI Forum because it will play an important part in creating the conditions for developers to produce and deploy mobile games quickly, efficiently, and cost effectively."

Because the aim is to create a global standard, the forum has opened its arms to game publishers and developers, game platform vendors, game service providers, mobile network operators, additional device and infrastructure vendors, and service integrators. Those interested in joining the forum can contact mgif@mchp.siemens.de for information.

The forums founders said that it will work closely with tool developing companies to develop Software Development Kits (SDKs) and other necessary tools for game developers. It has already begun work with Metrowerks.

"The mobile games market represents an attractive opportunity to games developers, publishers, and providers alike," said Ilkka Raiskinen, vice president, Mobile Applications and Services, Nokia Mobile Phones. "By supporting open standards and interoperability, we are ensuring that all parties, and especially mobile game players, will benefit. A membership in the MGI Forum is in line with our policy to support open standards and represents our latest effort in promoting an open approach to the mobile games market. We see this forum as playing a central role in setting up 3G game services."

Developer support, test facilities and application certification will be provided through Ericsson Mobility World which includes Ericsson Developers' Zone, Motorola's Applications Global Network (MAGNET) Program, Nokia's developer program Forum Nokia, and Siemens' Mobile-Partners Program.