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Lasky clarifies EA's mobile publishing plans

Off-portal games sales not a consideration

Mitch Lasky, senior vice president of EA Mobile, has claimed that recent comments he made regarding future distribution plans were misinterpreted - and that the company is still strongly committed to building relationships with carriers.

Reports that EA was preparing to step away from the traditional mobile distribution model to promote and sell its game titles directly to end-users began to emerge following Lasky's speech at the recent Harris Nesbitt Games Go Mobile Conference in New York.

Lasky spoke about creating demand to grow the mobile gaming market, discussing new applications that will "open up new ways for us to sell content directly to our customers."

In a bid to offer clarification, Lasky has stated that his comments - and the application used to demonstrate his point - referred to marketing and promotional activities, and were in no way an indication that the publisher is looking to side-step carrier relationships in its mobile business.

"The biggest limitation is billing," Lasky told US website Gamespot.com.

"The carriers can utilise their existing credit relationship with their customers to make charges for mobile games appear seamlessly on your phone bill. In order to sell directly, one would have to provide an alternative billing mechanism. There is some interesting activity in this area, such as Paypal's mobile platform. But right now, the carriers provide the best solution," he concluded.

EA continues its determined push into the mobile games and entertainment sector, leveraging its extensive portfolio of high profile brands and franchises which continue to prove popular in the traditional videogames market.

The company is clearly working towards asserting its dominant presence in wireless markets, but it appears that work is very much in partnership with existing distribution and publishing models, and will not - for the foreseeable future - involve cutting out carriers to distribute directly to consumers.

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GamesIndustry International is the world's leading games industry website, incorporating GamesIndustry.biz and IndustryGamers.com.

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