Tag: mobile game apps

Did mobile games being played by rail dispatcher cause German train crash?

An investigation has revealed that before the collision that killed 11 people, a smartphone game was played.

An investigation is currently underway regarding the head-on rail collision in Germany in which 11 people were killed, and prosecutors have stated that a dispatcher had been playing mobile games on a smartphone shortly before the crash.

The dispatcher has remained unnamed at the time of the writing of this article but has been arrested.

The dispatcher was arrested on suspicion of negligent homicide as it is believed that mobile games may have been distracting the individual who was required to pay attention in order to avoid the collision and the deaths of nearly a dozen people. The crash occurred on February 9, close to the town of Aibling. Both trains had been crowded with commuters when they collided, making this one of the worst railway accidents that have occurred in the history of the country.

Prosecutors assert that the male dispatcher was playing mobile games on his smartphone for “an extended period of time.”

Mobile Games - Image of Train CrashThey stated that this occurred until shortly before the crash occurred. Regulations for rail dispatchers prohibit the use of personal cell phones while on the job. The statement said that “Due to the close timing it must be assumed that the accused was distracted from controlling the cross-traffic of the trains.”

The suggestion is that the mobile game apps were distracting to the dispatcher and led him to send the wrong signals to the trains. Once the dispatcher realized what had happened, he pressed the wrong combination of buttons in order to make the emergency call, failing to properly alert the train drivers.

When questioned, the dispatcher admitted that he had been playing mobile games, but he denied that this caused him to be distracted. So far, investigators have not been able to discover any technical problems that could have either contributed or caused the collision between the two trains, according to the statement from the prosecution. This is only the latest in a growing number of cases accumulating worldwide which have associated mobile gaming with situations of dangerous distraction.

Tencent gears up to take over a massive mobile games marketplace

The tech giant from China is taking aim at gamers and doesn’t plan to slow down any time soon.

Tencent Holdings Ltd. has already grabbed hold of the top spot when it comes to being the leader in the mobile games category in China, but now it is stepping outside its home borders and is aiming to lead the way throughout other marketplaces, as well.

The company intends to start exporting games made in China into the United States and other markets.

In order to accomplish this goal, Tencent is working with San Francisco mobile games publisher, Glu Mobile Inc. Back in April, Tencent purchased a considerable stake in that company and they will now be working together to bring “WeFire”, Tencent’s most successful shooting game app, into the United States as well as other Western countries in 2016. Another one of its games – though the name has not yet been revealed – will be taken into the Japanese market next year by way of Aiming Inc., a local mobile game publisher.

Should Tencent be successful in taking its mobile games into other countries, this could change the entire marketplace.

Tencent - Mobile GamesThis will also provide Tencent with a powerful new avenue of growth as the current global mobile gaming marketplace is currently expected to grow to about $30.1 billion this year. That would mean that the figure would nearly have doubled since 2013, when it had been $17.6 billion. This, according to Newzoo research firm statistics.

The WeFire game app from Tencent is currently the most successful shooting game in China. Now it will be brought to the U.S. and other countries in order to go up against the top games in those markets. When a top grossing game reaches a leading spot in a specific market, it can bring in over $1 billion in revenue. However, when it becomes a global sensation, that figure can rise to $3 billion or even $4 billion, said the chief exec of the Kabam Inc. U.S. mobile game company, Kevin Chou.

That company intends to step into the mobile games market in China, next year. Alibaba Group Holding Ltd, a massive rival to Tencent, has a minority stake in Kabam.