Mobile game developer Gameloft recently came under fire for their DRM policy, which claimed that any user who purchased a game could not for any reason re-download it. This included wipes caused by authorized system updates to Android phones.
Needless to say, this angered many Gameloft customers, who paid upwards of $5 for each game. It didn't take long for the outrage to push Gameloft into announcing that it would be reviewing the DRM policy, but no timetable was provided.
Dave Loft (no pun intended), who has been in contact with Gameloft about the DRM complaints, recently received an update from a gentleman by the name of Dumitru over at Gameloft. Dumitru stated that the changes to DRM had been completed and provided details on the new policy, which recently went live.
Under the new policy, when a customer purchases a game from Gameloft’s website, it is now assigned a unique ID which is linked to a specific mobile device (likely via the IMEI number). This means that if you were to change devices, you would then be required to get a new ID. The old device would still have access to the games you have purchased until you get this new ID. This is done by sending an e-mail to Gameloft’s customer service, at which point they will send you an updated download link.
Dave Loft tested the new DRM, and it seems to be working:
As soon as I was sent the APK files I installed, then removed and tested the ability to reinstall. It all worked perfectly without issue and it’s definitely a requirement. – Dave Loft
While this is great news for Gameloft customers, another lingering issue exists: application updates. Currently, purchases of most high-end Gameloft Android games must be made through Gameloft’s website. If a game you have downloaded from the Gameloft website receives an update, there is no mechanism in place which will allow you to install the updated version without re-purchasing the game.
While it is great to see a company actually listen to their customers and make the changes needed to keep them happy, there is still work to be done. The inability to download Gameloft’s newest high-end faire through the Android Market is likely a result of their DRM system, but it does seem like it would be well-worth resolving (even if only to bring in more customers). The change to DRM policy signals a shift in the right direction, though.
Has this changed your outlook on Gameloft and their policies? Still hesitant because they are not available on the Android Market? Has this just left a bad impression that will not go away? Leave a comment below and let us know!
Thanks to Dave Loft for the tip!
Source: Letters From Dave