updated 10:30 am EST, Tue November 30, 2010
Increased convenience, diminished privacy
Apple has sent out an e-mail notification, warning Game Center users of a change to the service's terms and conditions. As with Microsoft's Xbox Live network, Game Center users can send out friend requests to other gamers in order to track them and join up for multiplayer matches. In a significant difference however, Apple says it is now including real full names when requests are sent out, taken from Apple IDs.
The change should decrease some of the confusion with Game Center, since people may not necessarily recognize each other by their aliases. It could also help protect younger gamers, removing the cloak of secrecy from bullies or predators. Some privacy concerns may exist, though, since people may have legitimate reasons for not wanting to share their real identities.