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Verizon Launches Android Game Subscription Service

By - Source: Verizon Wireless Email | B 7 comments

Why pay $8 for an Android app when Verizon customers can pay a $6 monthly fee for hundreds of games for their smartphone or tablet?

Verizon Wireless announced on Friday that it's now offering an Android game subscription service called GameTanium. This service is for Verizon customers only, and provides more than 100 of the best Android smartphone games and more than 50 of the best Android tablet games for $5.99 per device each month.

"GameTanium takes the guesswork out of finding the best games while offering consumers the convenience of a one-stop gaming destination at a great value," the company said on Friday. "The easy-to-use interface lets customers explore and discover high-quality games picked by Exent’s editorial board.  Enhanced editorial features such as parental ratings, rich game imagery and reviews immerse customers in the game before downloading.  Plus, fast download speeds and no advertisements give customers uninterrupted game play."

While this sounds like a great deal, playing games offered from Verizon has a huge setback. Speaking as an owner of the Xperia Play PlayStation-certified smartphone, Google Play offers the most updated apps -- meaning when an app is updated by the developer, Google Play has it first. Amazon's Appstore is second, and usually conflicts with Google Play in regards to updates even when Amazon's apps are versions behind Google.

That leads us to Verizon. Based on experience, Verizon Wireless typically doesn't regularly update the apps, or they're variants that the company offers. That means gamers are typically playing old apps when purchasing them through Verizon Apps (formerly known as V Cast Apps) -- even standard apps like Rdio and Skype are highly outdated versions of the ones found on Google Play. But despite that drawback, Verizon offers a monthly subscription for individual apps to those who don't want to make an actual purchase.

Will Verizon do a better job at offering updated apps with GameTanium? That remains to be seen. Currently Verizon customers can download the GameTanium smartphone and tablet apps from Verizon Apps on more than 30 Android smartphones and two Android tablets, including Motorola's Droid Razr, Motorola's Droid Xyboard 8.2 and HTC's Droid Incredible 4G LTE.

"Customers are encouraged to try out the service with a free trial, providing unlimited access for three days.  After the three-day trial, the service is $5.99 per month and will appear on customers’ monthly bill.  A Verizon Wireless data plan is required and usage may count towards a customer’s data allowance," the company said.

GameTanium users can access an in-app Help Center with Frequently Asked Questions and live GameTanium Customer Support which provides phone, SMS chat and email support Monday through Friday, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. E.T., Verizon said.

To get started, GameTanium is NOT in the Verizon section on Google Play. As previously stated, it's found within the Verizon Apps app on your smartphone or tablet, currently listed in the New Apps section. After downloading and installing the free GameTanium app, the home screen is similar to Google Play, featuring a section for Editor's Picks, What's New, and tiles showing several of the most popular games like Plants Vs. Zombies, Doodle God and others.

Ultimately, this may be a good way for Verizon gamers to get their fill for $5.99 per month: for the cost of one high-end gaming app, customers can get hundreds. That's not a bad deal if Verizon actually stays on top of the actual app updates.

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  • 5 Hide
    ddpruitt , July 13, 2012 10:24 PM
    I have Verizon (a grandfathered unlimited plan) and I'd much rather pay for an app through the play store. That way I have an updated app that I can use on my non-verizon devices and I can keep it once I drop Verizon. I pay for an app about once a month, and buying it through the play store creates fewer headaches than buying it through Verizon. My sanity is worth the small difference in price.
  • 0 Hide
    rac3r_x , July 13, 2012 11:22 PM
    Oh boy! Hey kids granpa is selling hard candies down the street who's in? bleh.
  • 1 Hide
    JOSHSKORN , July 14, 2012 12:27 AM
    SmartPhone games, you had me at AngryBirds...not. No thanks, I'll stick to the PC.
  • Display all 7 comments.
  • 4 Hide
    Anonymous , July 14, 2012 12:37 AM
    It would be much cheaper in the long run to just buy what you use instead of paying a monthly fee to "rent" from a small list of outdated games from which you will only play a few.
    I have zero confidence in Verizon keeping it updated and fresh. It will just end up becoming another piece of bloatware that will be forced down our throats in future firmwares.
  • -1 Hide
    thecolorblue , July 14, 2012 8:38 AM
  • 0 Hide
    eddieroolz , July 16, 2012 8:39 PM
    You'd think there'll be a single, unified store - a la App Store - but no, fragmentation is everywhere.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , July 26, 2012 10:53 AM
    Fragmentation is a concept no one on the internet seems to understand, nor does anyone care seem to care about the many cons of the dominence of app stores in the mobile industry. I honestly wish things would go back to the old days, where I could buy the game cd, which had the cd key (aka liscence) and play the game on any pc from now till kindom come. But alas, those days are long gone, as people mindlessly hand control of the market to individual corperations with no mind to the consequences. I just want to buy the app off the stupid website. I'll find the website by advertizments or word of mouth. App stores are an unneeded middle man in an industry flowing with them.

    Can't wait for windows 8. I really hope it isn't a sham like most crap these days.
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