Among the many announcements of Google’s annual I/O event (a gathering of the Google developer faithful to see what’s around the corner for them to play with), is that Google Play– the platform that encompasses all the consumable media in the Android ecosystem– is expanding its footprint to include desktop OS’s as well as iOS. The games-related portion of Play is Google’s answer to Xbox Live or iOS’s Game Center, but it’s Google’s intent to break it out of the single platform. This will enable players of games on disparate platforms to interact, compete, share content, and engage cross-platform. Play will also provide many common gaming services to save developers time and effort like cloud-based saves, multiplayer, and leaderboards.
Google Play was launched as a redesign and rebranding of Google Marketplace (The Android version of Apple’s App Store & iTunes), but also gathered under the Play umbrella its music store/cloud music service (Play Music), Play Books (the Kindle-like bookstore which also contains heaps of public domain titles, free to download), Magazines, Movies and TV. There does not appear to be any indication as to whether Google intends to weigh-in fully as a content delivery service across all the platforms its game tools will service at this point.