iPhone Games

I declared quite publically around a year ago that I was refusing to select an iPhone as my next contract phone, not due to the fact that I consider it a poor piece of technology but rather that it would have immediately made me ‘one of those’ people.

You know the type; you’re busy minding your own business but they’ll sit next to you and force you to endure a daily demonstration of the latest app that they’ve downloaded. They do this with such a self assured smugness that you’d swear that they’d invented the iPhone, not had it handed to them by their mobile phone provider.

I am starting to get a little envious however…..

It seems there are more to these apps than initially meet the eye; after years of dominance, both the Sony PSP and the Nintendo DS portable games consoles are starting to lose ground to, bizarrely enough, a phone.

After just a few years in the industry, the Apple iPhone boasts over 21,000 game apps compared to the Nintendo DS which has over 3,500 titles or the Sony PSP which has just over 600. In defence of the Sony PSP, the majority of those 600 titles are large games created by recognised software houses whereas the majority of the 21,000 iPhone games are ‘bite-sized’ two quid offerings.

Personally I have always been of the disposition that if you are going to play a game on a mobile device then you probably want it bite sized anyway as you’re unlikely to get enough uninterrupted time to get immersed in a monster sized game. That having been said, with the latest iPhone boasting a faster processor and third generation Operating System there are already some fairly staggering games coming to market and some serious money is being pumped in to future game development.

The method of game distribution is also one of the primary advantages the iPhone has over the competition. The Sony PSP for example uses mini optical discs that not only do users have to carry around with them but additionally distributors have to worry about the costs involved in producing and distributing the software to the gamer. The iPhone by comparison stores games in the internal memory of the phone and users simply download games directly from the Apple website rather than buying them in a more cumbersome physical format.

It will be interesting to see how the turning fortunes of Sony and Nintendo will affect any planned successors to the DS or PSP and it is becoming apparent that dedicated portable gaming systems may have their days numbered. Unfortunately for Nintendo this is a market that they have relied on heavily since they released the GameBoy back in 1989 and they are ill positioned to launch a competing product to the iPhone. Sony Ericsson however remains a formidable force in the mobile phone market it can surely only be a matter of time before they retaliate with their own hybrid device.


About the Author - Chris Holgate works for Refresh Cartridges who supply a wide range of printer cartridges at the UK’s lowest prices.