Social gaming provider PlayPhone today announced that it’s partnering with Verizon Wireless on a social-optimized game-centric storefront that will come preloaded on Verizon’s Android phones.
Scott Prather, senior director of business development at PlayPhone, said in a interview that the new store, named Games Portal, will employ Verizon’s one-click carrier billing systems for any purchases made within the storefront.
“It’s a social games network and gives developers access to the PlayPhone SDK, as well as carrier billing, social features, leaderboards, achievments and all of them will drive into this new offering of Verizon’s,” Prather explains.
The offering aims to highlight high-quality Android games and bring players of those games together, similar to Game Center on Apple’s iOS. In all, Games Portal will launch with about 200 titles from large developers like EA to smaller game makers, Prather said.
Prather admits the new PlayPhone storefront will be in direct competition with Google’s Google Play storefront.
“It’s games only. I think Google Play is fantastic for bulk, and it certainly has a large number of applications in there–I like to call a lot of them farts and flashlights…With the Verizon store it’s going to currated, we’re going to have the best quality content, with in-app purchases enabled, and we’ll have premium, as well as freemium games enabled.”
PlayPhone expects Games Portal to officially launch in Q1 but wouldn’t comment on exactly which devices it will be preinstalled.