Game On

iron man iPhone gameWith the premiere of Iron Man 2, the movie’s iPhone game is currently featured first in the App Store.

Smartphone gaming has entered into the gaming arena with a strong force. Spotting people playing games with each other through their phones is becoming as common a sight as people playing on a game console, or playing with other portable gaming devices. About 41% of smartphone users play games at least once a month, 16% play at least once a week, and 13% play everyday. There was a 35% decrease in feature phone gaming, but a 60% increase in smartphone gaming this year.

Having built an iPhone app for the Los Angeles Philharmonic, we recognize the value of casual gaming experiences for users. Our app gives LA Phil fans a fun, interactive experience that puts them in the shoes of conductor Gustavo Dudamel. The convenience of gaming on a smartphone reaches a wide demographic who aren’t necessarily avid gamers, but enjoy the experiences as an outlet of release, or a quick break from their everyday lives. It is important for developers and brand marketers to tap into that valued experience, because they could have users interacting with their brand for hours in a cross-platform environment. Mobile games can effectively have people virtually experience a brand, and have fun at the same time.

The trend of mobile gaming is currently going strong, and the upcoming release of the Apple Game Center, a social gaming network launching for the iPad and iPhone this summer, could open more opportunities for creative marketing efforts. The Game Center will become Apple’s social network that provides a space for players to connect, earn achievements, and compare high scores, similar to Xbox Live. The popularity of social games is apparent judging by the success of some of Facebook’s games: Farmville, Mafia Wars, and Restaurant City.

[stats via comScore]

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