Nokia's mobile gaming service to close

N-Gage to close next year

After less than a year of actual operational use, the mobile phone giant Nokia is to close its controversial - and developmentally expensive - mobile gaming service.

The service, which at one time was thought to hold some online gambling potential (see previous InfoPowa report) will close next (2010) year, a move widely seen in Europe as an acknowledgement of failure in the company's first major services offering.

Games and music were Nokia's first targets in the service sector as the group looked for new income sources to compensate as its traditional handset market matured. However, Nokia's dedicated gaming phones proved unpopular in the market despite a massive global advertising campaign.

"We will no longer publish new games for the N-Gage platform," Nokia said on its N-Gage blog this week, adding that the games would be available until the end of September 2010, and the supporting community site would remain in operation throughout 2010.

Nokia's leading position in the cellphone market had attracted all the top mobile game makers -- including Electronic Arts, Gameloft, Glu Mobile and Digital Chocolate to create special games for N-Gage.

After closing the N-Gage service, Nokia will continue to sell mobile games at its Ovi Store.

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