A big development of the last year has been the emergence of free ad-funded mobile games. Just this week Greystripe, one of the leading players in this space announced that they have done 140m mobile games downloads.
Free mobile games sites are a great example of how mobile 2.0 is re-defining the consumer proposition and value chain in a range of different mobile media sub-sectors. Traditionally mobile games have been based on paid-for games, usually created using licenses from console games or movies, and are sold via operator portals or via aggregators like Jamster. The new breed of mobile games sites are different - games are either created in-house or from older games from the big publishers. Instead of charging for them they offer them for free funded by advertising. This is helping to spread mobile games into completely new types of users.
There is a bit of question about the long-term sustainability of some of these sites - CPMs for in-game mobile ads are incredibly low - <$1 typically so there needs to be massive scale of game downloads or a move to a different ad model such as sponsorship to make the economics stack up.
Here are some examples of some of the free mobile games sites springing up...
Gamejump - free mobile games network
Gamejump is operated by Greystripe who have built a white-label ad-funded games platform which a lot of the big mobile sites have plugged into. Gamejump is their own in-house front-end for the platform. They have a good selection of downloadable games including action, adventure, arcade, puzzle etc. However, they are apparently moving to focus more on the iphone now rather than Java so they might not be updating the java services much.
Gamejump on mjelly (PC)
Gamejump on mjelly (mobile)
Hovr - free mobile games site
Hovr launched at around the same time as Greystripe/ Gamejump but without the white-label platform, focusing on buiding its own site. They offer downloadable casino, puzzle and arcade games - there's also some social elements like a high score table and player profiles.
Hovr on mjelly (PC)
Hovr on mjelly (mobile)
Playyoo - free flash games
Playyoo is a new site which is attacking the flash games market. They have a load of flash games which you can either download or play in your browser. At the moment, not many handsets support mobile flash but this is no doubt going to be a standard feature pretty soon. Apparently there are some really big successful flash games sites in
Cellufun - mobile games community
Cellufun is a US site which is extremely popular - they have a lot of mobile versions of popular classics like Chess or Blackgammon, or multi-player games like “Call of the Pharaoh”. They also have a a lot of social features including multi-player games are multi-player with high score tables, forums and player profiles.
Cellufun on mjelly (PC)
Cellufun on mjelly (mobile)
123 Play - free mobile games
123play is pretty new on the scene and they've been buying a lot of admob advertising recently. They offer a load of downloadable free mobile games including action and arcade, puzzles and racing and sports. Very nice mobile site at m.123play.com - easy to get to the games fast.
123play on mjelly (PC)
123play on mjelly (mobile)
That's it - you can find all these free mobile games and more in the mjelly directory. Let us know if you find anymore sites and we'll add them to this list.