Mimvi Debuts Mobile Games Search App

San Francisco-based mobile search specialist Mimvi this week rolled out a new dedicated games search engine geared for smartphone and tablet PC users looking for the latest and greatest mobile games.

The games search engine allows users to peruse the various gaming apps available at Apple's (NASDAQ: AAPL) App Store, Android Market, Research In Motion's (NASDAQ: RIMM) BlackBerry App World, Windows Marketplace and Ovi.

"Ultimately, mobile devices, whether a smartphone or tablet, are only as good as the content that resides on them," Kasian Franks, Mimvi CEO, said in a statement. "Mobile gaming apps are a driving force in the sale of smartphones and tablets; a trend that will only grow as we approach the holiday season."

A recent study by the Pew Research Center found that 34 percent of smartphone users download and play games from their devices.

According to UK-based IT research and consulting firm FutureSource Consulting, the worldwide market for mobile games is expected to eclipse $10 billion by 2014.

Another industry watcher, DFC Intelligence, predicts sales of iPhone and iPod Touch games will account for more than 24 percent of total mobile gaming sales by 2014.

Mimvi officials said the company's "Amazon-like" recommendation technology are provide consumers with the insights they need before forking over a few bucks at the App Store and give game developers credibility because most consumers buy games based on third-party recommendations rather than how they're marketed and advertised.

The company said the new games portal is just the first of what will be several vertical sites it plans to launch in the near future.

"With the launch of Google TV and Apple TV, we are in the early stages of a new platform world for internet app-based entertainment that will only escalate this trend," Franks added. "These are exciting times indeed."

Last week, Mimvi appointed one-time MySpace investor Joe Abrams to its board of advisers. In 1998, Abrams co-founded Intermix, the predecessor to MySpace, which was then sold to News Corp. in 2005 for $580 million.

Mobile games and developers are becoming hot commodities in the mainstream software and online media industries.

Last month, Electronic Arts (NASDAQ: ERTS) shelled out almost $20 million to buy Chillingo, the UK-based publisher of "Angry Birds" -- one of the most popular games on the iPhone.

Larry Barrett is a senior editor at InternetNews.com, the news service of Internet.com, the network for technology professionals.

TAGS:

mobile, gaming, mobile apps, mobile devices, mobile search

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