Google Unveils Google Play Game Services for Android, iOS and Web

At today's Google I/O keynote, Google unveiled Google Play Game Services, which is designed to compete with Apple's Game Center. Like Game Center, Game Services features real-time multiplayer capabilities, leaderboards, cloud saves, and achievements.

gameservices
The service is not limited to Android developers as Google has developed it to link gaming across Android, iOS, and the web. Google will be providing the SDK for Game Services to both iOS and web developers in addition to Android developers. As noted by Engadget, Game Services more closely resembles the now-defunct OpenFeint social gaming platform than Game Center.

Unlike Apple's Game Center application, what Google's offering is backend support for developers rather than a standalone application. Think of it more like OpenFeint than Game Center – you can sign in using your Google+ login in-game, and that login will track your identity (including leaderboard scores, achievements and saves) across various games and devices.

Several Android games have been updated with the new gaming service, including Osmos, Kingdom Rush, and Super Stickman Golf 2. The service and the SDK are launching today, with the following features:

- Achievements that increase engagement and promote different styles of play.
- Social and public leaderboards that seamlessly use Google+ circles to track high scores across friends and across the world.
- Cloud saves that provide a simple and streamlined storage API to store game saves and settings. Now players never have to replay Level 1 again.
- Real-time multiplayer for easy addition of cooperative or competitive game play on Android devices.

Google's Game Services comes several years after the introduction of Apple's Game Center. Game Center was originally introduced in 2010 and underwent a major overhaul in late 2011.

Top Rated Comments

AppleMark Avatar
107 months ago
Let the mindless Google hate begin...
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Variant Avatar
107 months ago
This is pretty cool.

Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
parapup Avatar
107 months ago
Lol we've had Game Center since like 3 years now

3 years of no one using it. Most run away after seeing the hideous, annoying, repeated sign in prompts from Game Center. Execution matters.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
nwcs Avatar
107 months ago
I guess what I read a few days ago really is right. Google is basically building its own platform atop the iOS platform. It's an ingenious strategy for them. I'll be curious to see how Apple responds, or if they even bother. It may not be a "threat" in the conventional sense since Google is slowly removing barriers for people between Android and Apple. Makes it easier to stay with Apple for some or move to Apple for some. Of course, the other way becomes easier, too.

And Google's strategy for competing with Facebook is becoming more clear, too. Using their already existing platform they can provide more interesting and timely connections with people that extend far beyond photo sharing and status updates.

It's all moot to me, though, since I don't need or desire those services. But I'm sure for many people it's a significant benefit.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
GoCubsGo Avatar
107 months ago
^ Agreed. Cross platform is great.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Small White Car Avatar
107 months ago
I guess what I read a few days ago really is right. Google is basically building its own platform atop the iOS platform. It's an ingenious strategy for them.
This was pretty much exactly what everyone thought Google was planning in 2008. It was Android that was the surprise.

You're right, I've been seeing more people write about it recently, but I'm a bit confused as to why 5-year old news is suddenly getting all of these articles. I guess it's because more apps are coming out now, but Google has always made a ton of money off of iOS. Even more than from Android by many people's guesstimates.

You're right that it's smart, but it's not news.

Again Google copying everything from others. Pathetic. But that is Google - spyware Xerox machine.
So I guess Apple copied Open Feint and X-Box Live, huh?

It's not like this is an incredibly obvious idea that every company is eventually going to make for themselves, right?
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

nothing ear 1 buds 1

Nothing 'Ear (1)' True Wireless Earbuds Launch to Take on AirPods Pro With ANC and Unusual Design for $99

Tuesday July 27, 2021 7:57 am PDT by
Nothing, a new brand from OnePlus founder Carl Pei, has today officially launched the "Ear (1)" true wireless earbuds after months of anticipation around the company's AirPods Pro rival. The Ear (1) features an in-ear design, Active Noise Cancelation, Bluetooth 5.2, IPX4 water resistance, and a charging case with Qi-compatible wireless charging and a USB-C port. Fast pairing is supported on...
iOS 14 on iPhone feature emergency

Apple Releases iOS and iPadOS 14.7.1 With Fix for Touch ID Apple Watch Bug

Monday July 26, 2021 9:48 am PDT by
Apple today released iOS and iPadOS 14.7.1, minor bug fix updates that come just a week after the release of iOS 14.7, software that introduced new Apple Card features and support for the MagSafe Battery Pack. The iOS and iPadOS 14.7.1 updates can be downloaded for free and the software is available on all eligible devices over-the-air in the Settings app. To access the new software, go to...
iPad mini pro feature 2

iPad Mini 6 to Feature 8.3-Inch Display With No Home Button and Narrower Bezels

Monday July 26, 2021 12:26 pm PDT by
The sixth-generation iPad mini that's in the works will have an 8.3-inch display, according to display analyst Ross Young. That will be larger than the current 7.9-inch display, with the larger size due to the removal of the Home button and a narrower bezel design. Rumors about the iPad mini 6 have been picking up in recent weeks ahead of its prospective launch this fall. Apple analyst...
iphone 12 pro gold

Report: iPhone 14 Pro Models to Feature Tough Titanium Alloy Chassis

Monday July 26, 2021 1:12 am PDT by
Next year's "iPhone 14" series is expected to feature high-end models with a new titanium alloy chassis design, claims a new investors report by JP Morgan Chase. According to the report, the use of titanium alloy will be one of the biggest changes to the case design in the 2022 iPhone series, and Foxconn will be the exclusive manufacturer of the titanium frames for the high-end models....
iOS 15 General Feature Purple

Everything New in iOS 15 Beta 4: Safari Tweaks, MagSafe Battery Pack Support, Notification Updates and More

Tuesday July 27, 2021 11:47 am PDT by
Apple today released the fourth betas of iOS 15 and iPadOS 15, introducing additional refinements to the new features that are coming in the software updates. In these betas, Apple has introduced changes for Safari, Notifications, Focus mode, and more. Safari Updates Apple is continuing to refine the design of Safari on the iPhone, and in iOS 15, there are tweaks to improve usability. ...
apple mac business page

Apple Shares 11 Reasons Why Business Users Should Choose Macs

Monday July 26, 2021 11:35 am PDT by
Apple today updated its Apple at Work website with a new section dedicated to the Mac, which offers up 11 reasons why "Mac means business." On the webpage, Apple highlights the M1 chip as the number one reason why business users should choose a Mac, offering up an M1 overview [PDF] that explains the benefits of the M1 chip. The information isn't new, but it does provide a look at all of...
imac with accessories

Larger Redesigned High-End iMac Rumored to Launch Next Year

Monday July 26, 2021 3:45 am PDT by
Apple's larger redesigned iMac will arrive sometime in 2022 rather than later this year, according to the leaker known as "Dylandkt." On Twitter, Dylandkt claimed that Apple's "high end iMac" is not expected to release in the fourth quarter of 2021 alongside Apple's "M1X Macs" – a reference to Apple's redesigned MacBook Pro models – because "Apple simply does not want their devices to...
General iOS 14

iOS 14.7.1 and macOS Big Sur 11.5.1 Patch Security Vulnerability That May Have Been Actively Exploited

Monday July 26, 2021 11:55 am PDT by
Apple today released unexpected iOS 14.7.1 and iPadOS 14.7.1 updates to the public, and according to a newly released support document, the software addresses a serious security vulnerability that may have been exploited in the wild. Apple says that an application may have been able to execute arbitrary code with kernel privileges due to a memory corruption issue. "Apple is aware of a report ...
apple bitcoin hack

Is Apple Really Buying Bitcoin?

Monday July 26, 2021 3:07 am PDT by
A large number of websites and posts on social media are stoking rumors that Apple has purchased $2.5 billion worth of bitcoin in the company's first move into cryptocurrency, but is there any validity to the claims? Many people are citing the fact that Apple was looking for a Business Development Manager with experience in alternative payments, including cryptocurrency, earlier this year as ...
new m1 chip

Tim Cook on Apple Deciding to Manufacture Components: 'We Ask Ourselves If We Can Do Something Better'

Tuesday July 27, 2021 3:04 pm PDT by
During today's earnings call for the third fiscal quarter of 2021 (second calendar quarter), Apple CEO Tim Cook was asked how Apple decides what components to purchase and what components to develop, and Cook said that Apple asks if it can be done better. We ask ourselves if we can do something better. If we can deliver a better product. If we can buy something in the market and it's great...