Gaming has long been a strong suit for Apple and iOS while being an easy target as a weak spot in Google's Android OS. Apple has Game Center a dedicated gaming platform that works across their range of offerings and it is about time Google start taking gaming more seriously and release a dedicated gaming network for Android. If Google develops a credible network it will gain the attention of game developers in a major way with an already massive installed user base. It will go along way in getting exclusive titles and take away one of the last remaining strong points of the opposition including WindowsPhone with their Xbox live integration.
One of Android's strong suits the variety of devices is also a problem when it comes to designing games that work across that large variety of devices and hardware/OS combinations. Google has stated their intentions to rein in the platform and make it more streamline across the board and that will go a long way in helping Android become a more suitable gaming platform. Currently games are being developed with specific hardware in mind such as Nvidia with Tegra Zone. While the games are high quality and feature great mobile graphics most require a Tegra 2 in order to be played leaving out a major portion of the Android ecosystem.
Tablets also play an important role in the gaming progress of the Android platform. As Android tablets continue to gain market share and when Ice Cream Sandwich combines phones, T.V.s and tablets onto the same platform and OS version it will be even more attractive to game developers. Imagine being able to take your game from your smartphone, to your tablet, and to your T.V. screen. It would be an amazing point for the gaming network to build upon.
Overall the hardware issues appear to heading in the right direction. The next step is Google investing in a serious gaming network for Android. With a serious gaming network Android will continue on it's path without hiccup, now that Google music has started to roll out gaming appears to be the last frontier for the platform. We know Google can get this done the question is will it happen sooner rather than later. Will they offer a half-baked network or one will full social integration and capabilities. One in which I can see my game activities, along with my friends activities and achievements, which games they have played recently, challenge them to multiplayer action, and easily communicate across my Android devices. Google knows what they need to do and I have my fingers crossed that it's coming soon.
What do you feel Google needs to incorporate in a Android gaming network to make it successful?