Mobile app news roundup: Google Play, Tapjoy and Rovio

By Kathleen De Vere Comment

Google Play passes 15 billion app downloads — Google’s official Android app store, Google Play has now driven more than 15 billion app downloads over the course of its lifetime, reports TechCrunch.

Jury finds Android does infringe on Java copyrights — The jury in the two year long Google/Oracle trial over the use of Java in Android has found that Google did in fact infringe on Oracle’s copyrights. The jury was split over Google’s claim that the Android APIs should be classified under fair use, reports the Mercury News.

Rovio buys Casey’s Contraptions — Rovio has bought Snappy Touch’s Casey’s Contraptions IP. Polygon is reporting company will re-launch the game under the name Amazing Alex. In other Rovio news, the company’s hit franchise Angry Birds has now spawned over 1 billion lifetime downloads reports AllThingsD.

Konami and Namco Bandai drop Kompu Gacha — Konami and Namco Bandai are the latest Japanese game companies to drop the now illegal practice of kompu gacha from their social games according to Andriasang. For more on kompu gacha, read our feature article here.

Tapjoy launches $5 million Tapjoy Asia Fund — Tapjoy has launched a $5 million app development fund specifically to help Asian developers make free-to-play games for iOS and Android. If selected for the Tapjoy Asia Fund, developers will receive guidance, working capital and distribution through Tapjoy’s platform. The company’s previous Android Fund resulted in the development of 155 apps.

Game Center Style hubs coming to BlackBerry, Android — RIM and Google are both working on building social gaming hubs for their platforms reports Gamasutra. BlackBerry’s standalone Games app will be included with BlackBerry 10, but few details are known so far about Google’s plans for a similar service. It has been long speculated Google is looking to integrate Google+ as the social gaming layer on its Android platform.

2 million downloads for Pocket — Since rebranding from Read it Later to Pocket, content curation app Pocket has racked up over two million downloads. Users now save more than 1 million items every day, double the engagement the app was seeing before it relaunched.

Storm8 hits 300 million downloads — Independent mobile developer Storm8 has seen its suite of games pass 300 million total downloads. According to TechCrunch, the company’s games are found on over 100 million iOS and Android devices.

EA PopCap releasing new Plants vs. Zombies games in China – Plants vs. Zombies may not have been a hit on Renren, but EA PopCap isn’t giving up on China. Gamasutra reports the company is releasing two new Android versions of Plants vs. Zombies in the country on Tencent’s mobile platform. EA recently launched a Chinese version of its social game The Sims Social on Tencent’s QZone platform.

[Funding] Frenzoo raises $1 million for female-focused mobile games — Hong Kong-based Frenzoo has raised $1 million in seed funding to produce 3D fashion games for women. The funding came from Efficient Corporate, Siemer Ventures, K5 Ventures and Metaverse Services.

[Funding] DoubleDutch doubles down on $2 million Series A — Mobile enterprise platform DoubleDutch has secured a $2 million round of Series A funding. The round was lead by Bullpen Capital with participation from the Floodgate Fund, Aaron Patzer and Jawed Karim.