Gaming company WildTangent provides online, downloadable, and social games for computer users. What makes WildTangent different from most game providers though is that the company offers game rentals as well as free ad-supported games and game purchases. Now WildTangent plans to bring its game rental model to Google Android. WildTangent will also offer some free, ad-supported games on Android as well as the ability to make full game purchases.

The idea is that users will be able to rent games for just a day. This might be enough time to play some games until you get bored, but it’s also a way for game developers to whet your appetite and convince you to make a future purchase. You could rent a game for as little as 25 cents, get hooked, and then pay a buck… or ten down the road for the full app.

WildTangent is working with a number of game developers, but hasn’t yet announced which games or developers will be involved. T-Mobile has already committed to offering the service to its subscribers later this year. The telephone company will also support carrier billing.

Customers will be able to purchase packs of WildCoins for between $4 and $10 per month, with rental fees starting at 25 cents per day. The monthly subscription aspect makes the service a bit more Netflix-like, but you won’t be able to play an unlimited number of games. When your WildCoins run out, you’ll have to purchase more or wait until the next billing period starts.

The whole idea makes a lot more sense for PC games which typically cost much more than mobile games. Why rent a game for 25 cents if you can buy it outright for $1? But as mobile games become big business, there’s reason to think that developers may start charging higher prices for their wares. The developers of [itunes link=”http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/infinity-blade/id387428400?mt=8&uo=4″ title=”infinity blade” text=”Infinity Blade”] for iOS, for instance, charge $5.99 for their app (which is cheap by PC game standards, but pretty expensive for an iOS app) and the company has made over $10 million so far.

Brad Linder

Brad Linder is editor of Liliputing and Mobiputing.He's been tinkering with mobile tech for decades and writing about it since...