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EA to take on Steam with launch of Origin distribution network

EA to take on Steam with launch of Origin distribution network
Strictly speaking more of a relaunch than the roll out of an entirely new service, the unveiling of Origin – EA's new download service – appears to have been staged with Steam in mind.

The new games distribution service will be available either on the web (via Origin.com) or via a new desktop application, featuring 150 games from both EA and what's described as 'partner' studios.

However, rather than merely focusing on the PC market, EA has stated that Origin will also target smartphones with a new range of social features.

Going social

"Origin is a game service with two fundamental features," said EA's senior VP of global online, David DeMartini.

"It's a download service for the very best content from EA and its partners. It also offers a social function which, over time, will connect a player's profile with friends lists and a cross-platform feed that shows what your friends are playing and where."

Such fuctions will also be integrated into EA's smartphone line up, iPhone and Android the most likely formats to benefit.

Either way, it appears EA has set its sites on expanding Origin across as much of its content as is possible.

"This is our first step in the evolution of Origin, and in the weeks and months ahead we will look to enhance the features and services as well as an expanded range of content," added DeMartini.

"From exclusive demos to full-game downloads, Origin is the place consumers will go for the best game experiences."

With a fine eye for detail, Keith Andrew is fuelled by strong coffee, Kylie Minogue and the shapely curve of a san serif font.

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