Electronic Arts has revealed that it is in talks with Microsoft to bring mobile games to Windows Phone 8. The new mobile OS is scheduled to launch later this year, and Electronic Arts apparently wants to have a presence when it does. This is something of a surprise, considering that Microsoft has struggled to gain an significant audience with its mobile efforts so far.
Despite that, EA sees potential in Windows Phone 8, with COO Peter Moore telling Bloomberg that having access to more platforms is never a bad thing. “We’re working very closely with Microsoft to understand what their views on gaming navigation are,” he said. “Anything that allows more platforms to be adopted quickly that have a gaming element is good for Electronic Arts.”
Indeed, lately we’ve been seeing Electronic Arts focus more on mobile and social games. The focus on boxed retail products is still there, but EA hasn’t exactly been shy about repeatedly proclaiming that digital is the way of the future. Electronic Arts clearly wants its hand in as many digital markets as it can, so it’s easy to see why the company is enthusiastic about Windows Phone 8, regardless of the fact that Microsoft has struggled in the mobile space so far.
Unfortunately, Microsoft’s best efforts haven’t been enough to surpass the far more popular Android and iOS platforms. Android and iOS both enjoy a large market share (Android more so than iOS), while Microsoft hasn’t been able to get out of the low single digits. At last count, Android had nearly 70% market share, iOS was sitting right around 17%, and Windows Phone was stuck at the bottom with only 3.5%. Microsoft is looking to make the next iteration of Windows more attractive to developers, and with Electronic Arts showing interest, we’re getting some early signs that those efforts are working. Stay tuned, and be sure to check out our story timeline below for more posts on Windows Phone 8.