Scramble With Friends (with a widget) comes to Google Play

Zynga is bringing its popular iOS title, Scramble With Friends to Android.  The title is launching on Google Play with a homescreen widget, a first for the developer.

The widget will sit on the desktop of an Android device and provide instant updates on a player’s various games. Players can go directly from the widget to a match without opening the Scramble With Friends app.

Although it remains to be seen what effect the widget will have, it could significantly improve engagement and retention. If it’s successful, don’t be surprised if Zynga starts including similar widgets with its other Android games.

Originally an iOS only title, the Boggle-inspired game launched in January and quickly become one of the top paid apps in the App Store. It’s still one of the top ten paid games.  On Google Play, the game is an ad-supported free-to-play title, but Zynga tells us a paid, ad-free version of the app is forthcoming.

Scramble With Friends is the third of Zynga’s “With Friends” franchise to be brought to Google Play, after Words With Friends and Hanging With Friends. According to Zynga, 16 million rounds of Scramble With Friends have been played since it debuted on iOS and over 184 billion words have been missed by players.

While the With Friends franchise is certainly thriving these days, Zynga has publicly admitted that traffic really started to soar when Words With Friends went cross-platform to Facebook. Currently, no plans have been  revealed for bringing Scramble With Friends to Facebook or Google+.