May 27 AT 4:27 PM Taylor Wimberly 37 Comments

Round 3: Pros and Cons of Gameloft’s Android store

Our last Gameloft article generated quite a bit of buzz across the Android blogs, so I thought an update was needed on some recent happenings.

First let’s start with the good. Gameloft has the best 3D games that Android has to offer. You can see of couple of their titles in my Sprint EVO games preview or head over to the Gameloft Android store to view even more videos. Gameloft currently offers 10 “HD+” titles which is the most impressive lineup I have seen from any Android developer.

I would also like to say that Gameloft’s customer support is good. I had issues with downloading one of my purchases and they were able to help me resolve the problem in a timely manner.

So Gameloft’s games are awesome, but what about the bad? For starters, the majority of their new games (9 of 10) are not available in the Android Market. This means customers must purchase the titles from the Gameloft store, which could be an issue for some.

The main problem stems from Gameloft’s DRM policy. One of our readers contacted Gameloft customer care to check their official policy when it came to refunds and re-downloading previous purchases. What he found was similar to what I reported on my own experiences.

When a customer purchases a game from Gameloft, that entitles them to one download of the game to one phone number and one phone model only. If a user switches phones, removes the game, or performs a firmware upgrade that requires a wipe, then they will have to buy the game again. Considering Gameloft’s titles are priced on the high-side of Android games ($6.99), it is disappointing that this only gets users a single download.

Gameloft chose to use their own store to experiment with new distribution methods for Android, but there is still the chance some of these games could find their way to the Android Market. Their only HD+ title in the Market , Asphalt 5, has sold over 5,000 copies and I believe future games will perform even better based off the number of new Snapdragon phones now available.

Is Gameloft’s refund policy enough to prevent you from making a purchase or could you care less? If these games were on the Android Market, would that increase your chances of buying one?

“About the handset, our policy is: according to our refund policy, once the game is successfully installed, we cannot resend it for any reason, unless you buy it again. One purchase entitles you to one download of the game to one phone number and on one phone model only. If you delete or otherwise remove the game from your phone, or change your handset, you will have to buy it again.”Roman GarmashGameloft customer care

Taylor is the founder of Android and Me. He resides in Dallas and carries the Samsung Galaxy S 4 and HTC One as his daily devices. Ask him a question on Twitter or Google+ and he is likely to respond. | Ethics statement

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