Duo to develop gaming via TV platforms

MUMBAI — Gaming company Indiagames, a subsidiary of UTV, has signed a deal with Reliance Big TV to provide interactive gaming services in India, the companies announced Thursday.

Branded iGames, the service will bow on Reliance’s direct-to-home platform. Indiagames will use its existing partnership with U.S. gaming company Oberon Media to bring their games “Galapago,” “Solitaire,” “Moodies,” “Space Moodies,” “Air Hockey” and “Darts” to Indian TV screens.

In addition, Indiagames will cater to local tastes by creating content based on local passions Bollywood and cricket, with a game based on this week’s Bollywood release “Chance Pe Dance” being unveiled at the press meet.

India has a computer penetration of only about 40 million, including corporate PCs, with low bandwidths, for a population of more than a billion. Television has around 130 million analog households with 20 million households subscribing to DTH platforms. Gaming is popular mainly on India’s 500 million mobile phones. The companies hope to change the existing scenario.

Reliance Big TV CEO Sanjay Behl said: “If we can move gaming from PCs to television, we will create a revolution and a whole new market and revenue stream.”

Indiagames CEO Vishal Gondal said: “The key reason gaming is not as popular in India as the Far East is because there is not enough access. On DTH, people will have access at home, the games will look exactly as on a PC and the whole family will be able to play. We believe gaming is going to be bigger than movies in India in the future.”

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