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Last Updated: Friday, 9 December 2005, 10:04 GMT
EA snaps up mobile minnow Jamdat
Screenshot from Doom RPG, Jamdat
Jamdat has made a version of Doom for mobiles
Mobile games firm Jamdat is being bought up by gaming giant Electronic Arts (EA) in a $680m (390m) deal.

The pair will publish more than 50 games for handsets in the 12 months after the deal is completed in early 2006.

Although EA makes some mobile titles, the deal is seen as a way to boost its presence in what is becoming a growing part of the gaming market.

The merger will also help Jamdat expand into Europe and Asia.

Mobile money

EA is best known for publishing console games many of which are so-called "franchise" titles such as Need for Speed, Madden NFL and Fifa.

Jamdat has made its name in the mobile world with some very simple games such as gem-matching game Bejeweled and classic Tetris as well as mobile versions of titles such as Tony Hawk's American Wasteland and Lord of the Rings.

EA's acquisition will give it access to Jamdat's expertise in the mobile market which is far more fragmented than the well-established console and PC gaming sectors.

Figures by analysts Screen Digest suggest that the market for mobile games was worth about $1bn in 2004 and it is expected to grow to $2bn by the end of 2005.

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