Scoreloop, a social gaming platform company based out of Munich, announced today they have been acquired by RIM, the company behind Blackberry and the Playbook. The acquisition was as much for the Scoreloop personnel as the technology behind the world-wide scoring system for mobile gaming. This gives an indication of RIM’s new direction, but does it mean anything to designers?
Scoreloop’s sole business is providing a system and SDK for adding social scoring into iOS, Android, Windows Phone 7, and now, presumably, Blackberry games. It’s a complete cross-platform solution. I don’t see non-gaming applications here, but it does lead one to wonder if RIM might be building up the foundation of a service set. One, which hopefully includes Blackberry Messenger, that can be offered cross-platform. But, I digress. What about the designers?
While the Playbook tablet seemed a questionable moniker to all the business types who form the core of Blackberry’s US customer base, it’s clear now that it is a pronouncement of RIM’s intent to provide a multi-discipline line of devices to the market. This means one more tablet to choose from when you go to the local tablet store to pick out our next sketching tool. Like most tablets on the market, the Playbook does not come with a pressure sensitive stylus. Expect more art/sketching programs to become available—there are currently two in the Blackberry App World—and get ready to have a whole slew of games to play instead of listening in during design briefings… Not that I would encourage you to do that, of course. I prefer watching subtitled movies.