on 08-07-2010 04:53 PM
on 12-07-2010 02:37 PM
With Sony producing phones, obviously it's not a huge leap of imagination to see Sony adding phone abilities to a PSP.
I'm not convinced though... The PSP (correct me if I'm wrong) is currently the most "powerful" mobile gaming device in mass production. It's pretty much the best at what it does.
Okay, it doesn't have Italian plumbers or a touch screen, but you'll not find a device with as good "all round" portableness going for it that DOESN'T have a phone on it too.
Add a phone to the PSP, do you get an iPhone killer?
I think it's clear Sony want a slice of Apple iPie. The Mini range is obviously Sony's attempt to dip its toes into the popular "cheap dowmload simple game" appeal the iPhone has. A game captures the iPhone owners collective imagination, and before you know it - an airport simulator that two three weeks and a packet of Jammy Dodgers to make sells millions.
Yet, despite some great reviews and great minis, most Mini games developers are struggling with the business model. PSP owners just can't seem to see "the point".
I can understand why. The device is almost a PS2 in your hands. Why do you want to play cheap puzzle games when you have fully fledged GTA games, Burnouts, God of Wars, etc, etc, etc? People with a PSP WANT A list games. They paid out for the hardware for the big games, to take their Playstation gaming with them.
People buy and iPhone because it's a phone AND it also has ways of wasting time while you're out and about. However, without the phone bit, it doesn't sell as well (the iPod Touch is essentially an iPhone without the phone bit. While it certainly is selling well, it never garnered the oomph the iPhone did).
Today of course, it appears that 28% of iPad owners use it primarily for "gaming":
Once again, Sony can see that "casual" market playing rubbish (I mean simplistic and shallow of course ) games on somebody elses kit. There has to be a market.
I don't think Sony quite understand that the market ISN'T a casual games market. It's not a phone market, or a "touch screen netbook" market. It's an Apple market. People buy (the hardware) purely because it's Apple. The sales of games is just something that happens as an after effect. There's a kind of "Apple whirlwind of hype" that picks up when a new game/app becomes popular. All iPhone owners tweet or Facebook or just tell each other about their "latest discovery" and quickly the whirlwind gets the game sold around the iPhone owners.
So, the point?
If Sony produce a "PSP Phone", who is the market? Is the market PSP owners? How many would replace their phone with a PSP? You're not looking at the world's largest market anyway of PSP owners moving.
So what about phone users? Well, HTC and Blackberry are both trying hard to fight Apple and to topple their "smart phone" domination. These are people devoted to doing what the iPhone does, only better and cheaper. They're making some inroads, but Apple are the kings. With competition from these guys, are Sony well placed to get a PSP phone in there too?
By the way, I know 3G doesn't mean it will be a phone, you could just have the 3G network link, but you're still stepping into that "smartphone" - always on area, and the lack of Phone would be seen as a massive weakness.
I'm just concerned that Sony don't really know who they're selling or what they're doing in the "mobile" arena.
They have the best handheld gaming device with brilliant features. Yet it can't come close to selling in numbers against the DS. Why not? Surely the PS2 sold brilliantly, why aren't those people buying a PSP?
They are looking at trying on the business model and ideas of Apple, the Nintendo of smart phones. The Sony product could be the greatest thing ever, but people are buying Apple for the same reason people are buying Nintendo - they just want to.
I love my PSPs, they're superb devices. I just hope that Sony can see that the niche market they have can be expanded with a better array of games (and less piracy putting off developers). If they aim for the skies (usually suited men from marketing will tell them how they can have a large slice of the iPie) then they'll fail as they did against the DS. Go for a realistic market with a strong product - forge your own way, stop trying to copy other business models and steal a bit of the action....
on 12-07-2010 02:59 PM
The problem with openly announcing a new PSP is that sales of the current models will completely grind to a hault. Considering they've been putting so much effort to get people back into the system and have been promoting big name games (Peace Walker, New GOW, Patapon 3, etc) I can't see Sony being in a rush to announce a new one.
Just give me two analogue sticks and the ability to play PS2 ports. All I've wanted for the past 5 years is a portable PS2 anyway
on 12-07-2010 03:25 PM
on 12-07-2010 05:03 PM
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