Sony Doesn't Think The iPad Threatens Gaming Biz, Says It Helps PSP Sales

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Sony has proven itself to be a giant in the gaming industry, first with the PlayStation console and now with the PSP line. The company's PSP Go took its fair share of criticism (mostly surrounding price), but the actual hardware/gameplay isn't too shabby. What's interesting, though, is how Sony's numbers have continually crept up despite the negative vibes. And odder still, it seems that Apple may be to thank.

In an almost too-good-to-be-true article, Sony has seemingly thanked Apple (at least in theory) for helping its PSP consoles to skyrocket in terms of sales. Granted, no physical thank you notes were sent, but how else would you describe the comments that John Koller, who is responsible for heading up the hardware marketing side for SCEA, made after the introduction of the iPad?

"Apple's entrance into the portable gaming space has been a net positive for Sony," Koller said in an interview. "When people want a deeper, richer console, they start playing on a PSP."

The remarks were made in reference to Apple getting into the gaming industry with its iPhone, iPod touch, and now, iPad. The App Store has a litany of games for purchase and for free, and some titles (such as Call of Duty: Zombies) are A+ apps with huge industry support. What's funnier still is that John's facts really aren't distanced from the truth of the matter.



Research firm NPD has figures that prove Sony's PSP sales have "nearly tripled" since the iPhone went on sale in June of 2007. So, in a sense, Sony's PSP sales have climbed ever since Apple reportedly got into the gaming side of things. We fully suspect that more factors than this have led to Sony's success, but it must feel good to be Sony when you're able to take a shot like that at what's seemingly the most invincible tech company out today.
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So what Sony is saying is that the iPhone made people realize how awesome handheld gaming is and they went and bought a PSP because of it. And they expect the same trend with the iPad?

Hmmm, I would have thought the opposite would be true. GTA: Chinatown wars hit the App store last week. Final Fantasy is due soon as well. The PSP has done well because it offers better gaming titles than the iPhone, but I see this trend changing with the more powerful iPad on the market.

Depending on how powerful the iPad becomes in successive generations, it will cannibalize marketshare from Nintendo and Sony in the handheld gaming market .

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i would rather have a psp in my pocket then a ipad in my backpack or just my iphone :D

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rapid1 replied on Mon, Feb 1 2010 11:10 AM

Thats what he is saying I think Inspector. The iphone Touch and now iPad bring greater recognition of handheld capabilities. However; there market coverage (Apples) in playable full release games is low. The Sony handheld unit has available games from a much wider percentage of companies. They also generally have a much wider spectrum of types of games on the platform level as well. So in the end it is Sony and in a way Nintendo as well that receive the positives, because when someone wants a handheld gaming unit that's whose equipment they buy. Think about if a young adult up wants a unit they can accomplish multiple things on in a handheld market where do they go currently Apple, so Apple handheld units are recognized and brings recognition to handhelds. Yes they have some games but it is not widely recognized solely as a gaming unit. Whereas if someone wants a hand held which now has wider market visibility due to Apple, but they want one which is primarily for gaming they get a Sony or Nintendo. Plus if you look in any store near the iPads etc usually the gaming units are right next to them as are the camera's and cell phones sometimes due to all merchandise's size factors.

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rapid1 replied on Mon, Feb 1 2010 11:11 AM

However; just as Inspector made the point he would much rather have a Sony unit in his pocket for this task than an iPhone or an iPad.

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ttvinko replied on Mon, Feb 1 2010 11:27 AM

I used to be a huge fan of Sonys PSP but the day I bought my Iphone 3G, I never picked up the PSP again.

Jess

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Inspector replied on Mon, Feb 1 2010 11:37 AM

rapid1:

However; just as Inspector made the point he would much rather have a Sony unit in his pocket for this task than an iPhone or an iPad.

lol i never said that Big Smile i said i rather, not i would :D. I always have my iphone by my side :D. My psp is just sitting on my desk, there's no good games for it lately...

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rapid1 replied on Mon, Feb 1 2010 12:42 PM

True ttvinko, but would you rather have an iPad than the Sony seeing as you could most likely use nowhere near the same amount off app's. I think it just changes the focus in a positive for Sony. If you go to a store looking for a hand held gaming unit as a lower amount per usage as an adult you may very well choose an iPad, iPhone, as a younger user who is more focused on gaming specifically. They will maybe at the direction of there parents to the hand held area, but buy a Sony hand held for it specific gaming technology.

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rapid1 replied on Mon, Feb 1 2010 1:15 PM

maybe so gibbersome but Sony has been and will be developing to. If this item makes the hand held market larger it would also increase there release rates wouldn't it. I think that's what he is talking about the expansion of a singular hardware device and the recognition it brings to the market. This is really a lot of or similar to what I was saying a few days ago. This device will bring higher recognition to this platform, and therefore change the market significantly. When Apple puts out a device it is always recognized and talked about kind of like when M$ is rolling to and shortly after they release an OS. Then discussion and of course market focus changes more to that area as well. SO it focuses the market on a new thing, with it being a device it expands the social consciousness of the device category.

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I don't believe the Ipad aka Ipod touch XL will truly be know for its gaming. People who wanna game hand held normally have a DS or a PSP. Plus the Ipad doesn't have much going for it to be useful in any aspect. Maybe that will change when they revise the Ipad and release V.2.

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The DSI and PSP have one big advantage, they have physical buttons and controls. I love my iphone but it sucks at playing action, side scrolling, 1st person shooters, etc. Simple games are great on it, but strictly hardcore gaming, iphone/ipad/itouch don't compare.

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rapid1 replied on Mon, Feb 1 2010 4:02 PM

Right thats what I was saying in a way the iPad and iPhone or touch for that matter aren't really set up for gaming. At least in my view.

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Ya i agree, the way you move around on the iphone or touch for games such as shooter is annoying. I always more too far out and it stops moving in which i get killed... Have you tried call of duty: zombie nazi on the iphone? its kind of hard to me -.-

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After having seen what passes for gaming on the iPhone, I have to say that Sony has a point... just not a good one.

A large number of iPhone games are merely ports from other system which have a touch-pad splattered on the screen. Ubisoft's Assassin's Creed is one such-- it's difficult, if not impossible, to play. (Not that you're missing anything. It's like a 2 1/2 D version of Ninja Gaiden.) Old-school adventure games, where you have to hit Return (or tap a special section of the screen) every few seconds, just don't fit the hardware. Those games would be better on a PSP. (Assuming young eyes to read the large amounts of tiny text.) The people who try to make 3D first-person shooters (FPS) run on hte iPhone strike me as people whose ideas on gaming crystallized in 1996 and haven't changed since.

But more innovative games-- ones which use the accellerometer and other features of the iDevices-- excel, and the NES-on-steroids-and-shrunk-down that is the PSP looks weak by comparison. Who uses one as their main gaming machine? Even when I was playing console games, I used the PlayStation/Xbox/GameCube when at home, and the portables when on long trips.

But Sony has always been where good ideas go to die. Remember, they could have had the iPod, but rejected it.


"I didn't cry when Bambi's mother was shot... but I cried when HAL was turned off."

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