Playing with your friends should be a lot easier now, thanks to a significant app update.

by Jason Venter

Words With Friends is one of the more popular of Zynga’s numerous interactive offerings, a Scrabble-like mobile game that you can conveniently play with friends while you are on the go. The title has even inspired a board game (which appropriately is placed on shelves next to Scrabble in some board game shops).

Today, as noted on Touch Arcade, Zynga announced its follow-up effort: New Words With Friends. The mobile title is free to download and play, and even comes with a new solo option in case you’re short friends or an Internet connection. Additional options have also been added to the mix, so that you can more easily find an interesting opponent.

“There’s also a new Community Match feature which lets you browse through a list of potential players and choose which one you want to take on,” explains Touch Arcade. “It’ll display their skill levels compared to yours, and their photo and location (if they’ve enabled that) so you can have more of an idea who you’re playing. The normal auto-matching is still there too, if you want to go that route.”

Naturally, any game needs to have a means of generating a profit. Zynga chose to support New Words with Friends by implementing banner ads that appear at the bottom of the screen. Consumers who aren’t interested in seeing ads all the time will eventually have the option to remove third-party ads by way of in-app purchase, though that isn’t available quite yet. Those who paid for the previous edition of Words With Friends (no longer available on the store) also will forego the pleasure of ad viewing, but it’s hard to imagine any of them complaining.

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