Games flicr

Anil Ambani-owned Reliance Communications (RCOM) has launched ‘Reliance Games Arcade’, its branded games store for RCOM users with a library of more than 300 apps from domestic and international developers. Both postpaid and prepaid users can download unlimited apps from games store at Rs 15 for 10 days. The store is hosted on Opera’s app store platform and can accessed via a website or by manually downloading the Games Arcade app from the site. The games available for download can be run on Android Devices only.

Speaking about the launch during an analyst call, the company’s Consumer Business CEO Gurdeep Singh said RCOM is now offering a “full suite entertainment portfolio” rather than just being a telecom service provider offering 4G. “Mobile has become the new resource for entertainment and we want to make the most of it,” Singh added.

This isn’t the first time that a telecom operator has launched a branded games store. Last month,  Idea Cellular said that it is working on launching a mobile games app in the third quarter of this fiscal year along with chat, music and movie streaming apps. In 2014, Vodafone India also launch a subscription service called Vodafone Games and Apps through a tie up with Disney for its subscribers. The store’s website currently seems to be taken down.

In January, Airtel owned Wynk brand launched a standalone games store named Wynk Games that claimed to host over 2,000 games for Airtel users. This was Airtel’s third attempt at mobile gaming after it launched a web-based store under ‘one.airtel.in’ in 2013 which hosted games and other content. It had also partnered with Nazara Technologies in the same year to launch Airtel Games Club, a free service in 14 countries including India.

Reliance Spottr location tracking service

RCOM has also launched location tracking service Reliance Spottr. The service allows an RCOM subscriber to determine location of up to five RCOM mobile numbers throughout India after securing consent from each user. This can be accessed by dialing *121*10# or by logging on to the service website. Note that subscribers will have to create a separate ‘Spottr’ account for using the service.

RCOM’s Spottr bears a striking resemblance to Airtel’s location tracking service Buddy Finder which was launched in 2009. Buddy Finder was later renamed as Friend Locator. It can be used through a USSD dial code and through a website. Both Spottr and Friend Locator sends out an SMS seeking an approval to locate a user every time a subscriber adds a new user to the service. Both services sends out location in text; for e.g. “Location of User A is Andheri West, Mumbai”.