SMS is the new black

A review of mass market mobile apps

Mobile Club Manager coming soon

Posted by Admin on January 27, 2009

A new football manager game is being launched soon for the mobile called, appropriately enough, Mobile Club Manager (MCM). It has been specifically designed for Java-enable phones (so pretty much all of them then) by SANCO.

If you’re an eagle-eyed mobile gamer you might have seen it before and that’s because a beta version was released over the summer to test out the game (here’s a review from PocketGamer). I’m hoping to get chance to play it before the full release and review in a bit more detail. But for now, I was lucky enough to be able to ask a few questions of Shahid Mohamed, the head of gaming at SANCO. The first question I asked him was to describe the game.

“Mobile Club Manager is the first-ever massively multi-player football management simulation game within a persistent world that you can take with you anywhere via a Java-enabled mobile phone. Just as in the Premiership, ‘managers’ (users) play a 38-game season, with the aim of doing as well as they can in the ‘MCM League’.”

I then asked Shahid if his mum played the game (always my test for how targeted at the mass market an application is). His answer was quite simple: “No. However, that is simply because she cannot see the point of football!” to be fair to him, I think that would be the same for my mum.

If she did want to play, there is a demo that can be downloaded from the MCM website here.

But back to the questions:

What needs to happen in the future to make games like this played by everyone?
shahid1– The barrier is as much cultural as technical. Mobile phones are some years behind the internet in terms of breadth of customer usage: so, just as shopping online, for example, has now become universally accepted, it will similarly be just a question of time before mobile phones are used for a number of applications currently meeting user resistance.

Having said that, advances in technology will also help make user acceptance easier. And here, designing applications ‘from the ground up’ using mobile technology – such as Mobile Club Manager in the gaming world – will be essential in making this happen more quickly.

What do you think is the future of mobile applications?
– Mobile applications will become more connected – ‘pushed’ and ‘pulled’ according to user convenience. This shift is already underway as a result of the success of the iPhone, offering natural connectivity.

At the same time, pricing is an issue. Prices will come down as the technology becomes more established. However, this will also depend on the strategies of mobile carriers, as they look to diversify into new revenue streams such as SMS and internet connectivity in order to maintain revenues and profitability.

Have you got anything else in the pipeline?
– We have just launched a major new ‘Friendlies’ option which enables users to play any other MCM manager of their choice at any time, so putting control as to when they play fully in their hands.

Looking ahead, we will soon be launching six more training games, enabling ‘managers’ to improve key aspects of player and team performance. And, with the flexibility of the underlying Parallel Worlds platform, we are looking to extend into Europe just like the Champions League – perhaps as early as next season. Watch this space!

Thanks Shahid. And hopefully there’ll be more on Mobile Club Manager soon.


One Response to “Mobile Club Manager coming soon”

  1. Shahid said

    The iPhone version is out now. Get it via the Apple AppStore

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