Google and Qualcomm announce new mobile gaming initiatives

Tech giants Google and Qualcomm both focused on mobile gaming at the start of the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco.

Google announced a few initiatives aimed at Android games developers, the most potentially intriguing of which was Search Trial Run Ads. This is a new ad format (and let’s not forget that Google is essentially a type of ad-funded media company) that includes a ‘try now’ button. Pressing this take you straight into the game, allowing you to play it for up to ten minutes without having to download it.

Additionally Google released a new video recording API, which will apparently give developers the option of letting gamers stream their efforts straight onto YouTube as well as recording a video file of their gaming session. In a further bid to help smaller developers Google is also launching Indie Corner – a dedicated section of Google Play – that will only contain games made by independent developers.

Qualcomm has wasted little time jumping on the virtual reality bandwagon initiated by the Samsung Galaxy S7 launch event at MWC 2016. A new VR SDK (software development kit) is designed to optimise the Snapdragon 820 (which appears in some versions of the S7) for VR. It does do via exotic features such as DSP sensor fusion, fast motion to photon, and stereoscopic rendering with lens correction.

“We’re providing advanced tools and technologies to help developers significantly improve the virtual reality experience for applications like games, 360 degree VR videos and a variety of interactive education and entertainment applications,” said Dave Durnil, senior director, engineering at Qualcomm Technologies. “VR represents a new paradigm for how we interact with the world, and we’re excited to help mobile VR developers more efficiently deliver compelling and high-quality experiences on upcoming Snapdragon 820 VR-capable Android smartphones and headsets.”

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