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June 13, 2012 | By Ben Fritz
Activision Blizzard Inc. is jumping into the fast-growing mobile market by offering itself as a partner to independent game developers. The Santa Monica company best known for focusing on a small number of lucrative franchises such as "Call of Duty" and "World of Warcraft" has traditionally been more conservative than competitors such as Electronic Arts Inc. about making games for smartphones. Though revenue from games on devices including the iPhone has grown fast, it's still small compared to traditional consoles.
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ENTERTAINMENT
February 11, 2014 | By Oliver Gettell
The large, crazed bunnies known as Rabbids -- spawned from the "Rayman" video game franchise and popularized in an animated TV series -- are headed to the big screen, Sony Pictures Entertainment and French game publisher Ubisoft announced Monday. The two studios are partnering to develop a feature film based on the characters. Jean-Julien Baronnet, executive director of Ubisoft Motion Pictures, said in a statement that Sony "has tremendous experience developing hybrid live-action-and-animated blockbusters for audiences around the world, which makes them a natural fit for what we want to achieve with a Rabbids film.
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BUSINESS
March 22, 2012 | By Alex Pham, Los Angeles Times
Zynga Inc., eager to fast-track its presence in mobile games, has snatched up Omgpop, the New York-based developer of Draw Something and more than 35 other titles. The companies did not disclose the purchase price when the deal was announced Wednesday, but VentureBeat reported this week that Zynga and Japanese mobile company Gree were both considering buying Omgpop for about $200 million. Although Omgpop has been around since 2006, it wasn't until it released Draw Something six weeks ago that the company vaulted into prominence.
BUSINESS
February 6, 2014 | By Salvador Rodriguez
Flappy Bird is incredibly simple, incredibly frustrating and incredibly addictive to play. And it's raking in an incredible $50,000 in revenue daily. Created by Vietnamese developer Dong Nguyen, Flappy Bird has been one of the most popular games and apps for both the iPhone and Android devices over the last month. The game is free to download and only requires that users tap the screen to play. The main character is a round, yellow bird who must avoid hitting green pipes as it flies.
BUSINESS
February 6, 2014 | By Salvador Rodriguez
Flappy Bird is incredibly simple, incredibly frustrating and incredibly addictive to play. And it's raking in an incredible $50,000 in revenue daily. Created by Vietnamese developer Dong Nguyen, Flappy Bird has been one of the most popular games and apps for both the iPhone and Android devices over the last month. The game is free to download and only requires that users tap the screen to play. The main character is a round, yellow bird who must avoid hitting green pipes as it flies.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 6, 2012 | By Alex Pham
The total number of people playing video games in the U.S. declined 5% this year despite a dramatic surge in the popularity of games on smartphones and tablets. In an annual survey conducted in March by the NPD Group, the U.S. had 211.5 million gamers, down from about 223 million in 2011. The hardest hit category was players of family or children's games, NPD analyst Anita Frazier said. That was followed by declines in the number of people who played "hard-core" games such as the "Call of Duty" franchise.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 18, 2013 | By Joe Flint
After the coffee. Before the trip to Jiffy Lube. The Skinny: It was on this day in 1985 that Redskins quarterback Joe Theismann's career came to an end in a Monday Night Football game against the Giants. We lost Theismann, but won the game. Enough Redskins history, Monday's headlines include the box office report and a look at Disney's problems with mobile games. Daily Dose: During the halftime show of Sunday night's Chiefs-Broncos game, lead anchor Dan Patrick actually gave an introduction to a Toyota Camry commercial.
BUSINESS
March 20, 2006 | From the Associated Press
Dialing into the fast-growing market for mobile games, a San Francisco-based start-up is poised to unveil a new service today that it hopes will make television viewers as hooked to their cellphones as they are to remote controls. AirPlay Network Inc. said it would introduce a lineup of cellphone games tied to live television broadcasts.
BUSINESS
March 4, 2005 | Chris Gaither, Times Staff Writer
If Yahoo Inc. has its way, that beeping in your pocket could be a phone call. Or an invitation to play backgammon. The Internet titan plans to announce today that it has acquired Stadeon Inc., whose technology lets users of Web-connected cellphones play games against opponents on other cellphones or seated at computers. The service is expected to be available through all major mobile networks this year. It is Yahoo's latest bid to extend its reach beyond the personal computer.
BUSINESS
June 5, 2011 | By Alex Pham and Ben Fritz, Los Angeles Times
At the video game industry's first Electronic Entertainment Expo 16 years ago, Sony Corp.'s PlayStation and Sega's Saturn dazzled attendees and defined the cutting edge of coolness with their CD drives and three-dimensional graphics. This week, as the industry gathers in downtown Los Angeles for its annual E3 extravaganza, some experts are questioning how significant those boxes of electronics really are in a rapidly changing video game business. After dominating the market for decades and making their way into 1 out of every 2 U.S. homes, consoles are beginning to face serious competition as teenagers and adults increasingly play games designed for smartphones, tablets and online social networks.
BUSINESS
December 25, 2013 | By Salvador Rodriguez
There's a good chance you woke up with a new smartphone or tablet this Christmas morning, but as Microsoft can tell you, no one wants to use a device with no apps. If you've got a new gadget, you need to load it up with the best apps, that way the device can actually improve your life and not just bust your loved ones' wallets. Last year, 328 million apps were downloaded on Christmas , and this year, the number is expected to be even higher. So what apps should you download? Every user has different needs so no one has the same apps, but the apps below are must-have for most users.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 10, 2013 | By Ryan Faughnder
"Family Guy" fans will soon have another pastime that fits with Peter Griffin's preferred level of physical activity: a video game for mobile devices.  Fox Digital Entertainment, the mobile content division of 20th Century Fox, has teamed with San Francisco start-up TinyCo to put out the yet-unnamed game based on "Family Guy," the irreverent animated comedy. The game will launch early next year for iOS and Android smartphones and tablets, the companies said Tuesday. TinyCo is working with the writers from Seth MacFarlane's Fuzzy Door Productions on the role-playing game in which players control the characters from the "Family Guy" hometown of Quahog, R.I., through various adventures.  RELATED: More games coverage by The Times   One of the important challenges, said Andrew N. Green, TinyCo's head of business development, is to make sure the humor of the show carries into the game.  "We want you to laugh your ass off," he said.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 18, 2013 | By Joe Flint
After the coffee. Before the trip to Jiffy Lube. The Skinny: It was on this day in 1985 that Redskins quarterback Joe Theismann's career came to an end in a Monday Night Football game against the Giants. We lost Theismann, but won the game. Enough Redskins history, Monday's headlines include the box office report and a look at Disney's problems with mobile games. Daily Dose: During the halftime show of Sunday night's Chiefs-Broncos game, lead anchor Dan Patrick actually gave an introduction to a Toyota Camry commercial.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 23, 2013 | By Jessica Gelt
"Duck Dynasty" just got more dynastic. A&E's wildly popular reality series has spawned its own mobile game app called "Duck Dynasty: Battle of the Beards. " Now available in the App Store, the game enables fans to occupy the "redneck" universe of the rough-and-tumble Robertson family in the backwoods of Louisiana. The goal for players is to transform from a clean-shaven yuppie type into a duck-hunting man's man with a mega beard. PHOTOS: Hollywood Backlot moments In addition to duck hunting, the game allows players to "eat chilies, blow up beaver dams and compete in sets of rapid-fire micro-games that test players' reflexes and drop them feet first into the Louisiana backwoods.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 25, 2013 | By Ryan Faughnder
Shares of social video game company Zynga Inc. fell more than 14% in after-hours trading after the company on Thursday gave revenue and earnings guidance that fell short of analysts' expectations.  The San Francisco company said revenue for the third quarter will be $175 million to $200 million. That's less than the $214.3 million analysts were expecting. Third-quarter net loss could be 2 cents a share to 5 cents a share, while analysts had expected a 2 cents-per-share loss.
BUSINESS
January 31, 2013 | By Salvador Rodriguez
Imangi Studios' "Temple Run 2" became the fastest mobile game to reach 50 million downloads Thursday, hitting the mark on the 13th day of its release. The game, which is available for both Apple and Android devices, beat the record set in April 2012 by "Angry Birds Space. " That game reached 50 million downloads in 35 days. “The game has performed beyond our wildest dreams, and we are thrilled that gamers and fans have embraced 'Temple Run 2' in such a short period of time,” said Keith Shepherd, co-founder of Imangi Studios, in a statement . 10 tech companies to watch in 2013 In "Temple Run 2" players control a running character who has to jump, slide, turn, swing down a rope and drive a mine cart for as long as they can so they can get the highest score possible.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 22, 2012 | By Alex Pham
For the digitally obsessed youth of so-called Generation Z, what is the definition of a toy? That's the question that Rodger Raderman and Doug Penman set out to answer in 2009 when the two parents founded a company called Nukotoys in San Francisco. On Tuesday, they came up with their answer: A set of trading cards that works with a series of iPad games. Players tap the cards on an iPad or iPhone in order to unlock new content in the games. Nukotoys launched two games, "Animal Planet Wildlands" and "Monsterology.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 27, 2012 | By Alex Pham
So-called micro-transactions generated from the sale of virtual games on mobile devices are generating macro-revenues, according to a survey released Wednesday from media research firm Frank Magid Associates Inc. One out of four tablet users surveyed spent money on games last year, with an average outlay of $62 each. Those who played games downloaded about 20 titles each. That's substantially more than smartphone gamers, who downloaded about 10 games on average and spent $25 each in 2011, according to the research firm, which canvassed 2,540 people through an online survey.
BUSINESS
December 11, 2012 | By Jessica Guynn, Los Angeles Times
SAN FRANCISCO - Parents often hand over their smartphones and tablet computers to keep their kids entertained. But most parents are unaware the mobile apps and games that delight their kids are secretly collecting personal information they then share with marketers and other third parties. Now federal regulators are investigating whether mobile apps makers, in transmitting this data without parents' knowledge or consent, have violated laws that protect children's privacy. The Federal Trade Commission declined to name or say how many mobile apps makers it's probing.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 13, 2012 | By Ben Fritz
Troubled social games giant Zynga lost one more senior executive on Tuesday and promoted four to replace its depleted ranks. David Wehner, chief financial officer of the San Francisco company behind "Farmville" and "Words With Friends," is leaving to take a senior finance job at Facebook, Zynga announced Tuesday. The move comes three months after Zynga's chief operating officer, John Schappert, exited and two months after the departure of chief marketing and revenue officer Jeff Karp.
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