RIM Acquires Social Gaming Outfit Scoreloop

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In a clear sign that it is taking the mobile gaming and social media crazes seriously, Research in Motion on Tuesday acquired Germany-based Scoreloop, maker of a cross-platform toolkit that developers use to incorporate social functionality into mobile games.

The Blackberry maker will work with the Scoreloop team to "provide tools that will further enable [its] developer community to take gaming to a new level of social integration on the BlackBerry platform," Tyler Lessard, RIM’s vice president of global alliances and developer relations, noted in a blog post.

Scoreloop's technology will help supplement RIM's new BBM Social Platform which, among other things, allows developers to embed RIM's native messaging services deep into their own social applications, according to Paid Content.

For RIM, the acquisition seems necessary, although it may have come a year too late. The Blackberry platform continues to struggle in the gaming and social media departments – the two hottest sectors in the mobile space.

Just last week, market research firm comScore reported that Apple has overtaken RIM as the nation's number two smartphone platform maker, even though Apple hasn't introduced a new handset since last summer.

The Canadian company's shares recently fell below $40 for the first time in more than two years. RIM shares have dropped by more than 40 percent since February.

RIM is hoping that the Scoreloop acquisition can help the company's developers carve out their own little niche in the social gaming space, which should make Blackberry handsets a bit more attractive to younger consumers.

Scoreloop's SDK enables developers to add more social elements to their apps, as well as various revenue generating features such as in-application purchases and virtual currency, according to the AFP. Scoreloop chief executive Marc Gumpinger said that his company will continue to support platforms other than RIM's, but the "BlackBerry solution will be unparalleled."

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Beecher Tuttle is a TechZone360 contributor. He has extensive experience writing and editing for print publications and online news websites. He has specialized in a variety of industries, including health care technology, politics and education. To read more of his articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Carrie Schmelkin

TechZone360 Contributor

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