Videogames have never been more accessible than they are today, and no company has made games more readily available to consumers than Apple. No matter where the player is in the world, as long as there’s a 3G signal, he or she can purchase and begin playing a game within minutes.
It’s the efficiency with which Apple gets its products into consumers’ hands that makes former Sony VP Phil Harrison so bullish on the iPhone company’s place in the videogame industry.
“At this trajectory, if you extrapolate the market-share gains that they are making, forward for ten years – if they carry on unrestrained in their growth, then there’s a pretty good chance that Apple will be the games industry,” said Harrison.
“…the speed at which Apple sold 15 million iPads is phenomenal. And the number one activity on an iPad, according to some reports, is games, and I think that will only continue.”
Let’s not go crazy here. There’s no doubt that Apple is indeed making a lot of headway, but there are a couple things that stand in their way. First of all, there’s still no joystick on the iPad; and while the iPad is a pretty nifty device, it’s not outfitted to play games like Nintendo’s 3DS and Sony’s PS Vita are.
Second, Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft all have their own networks to move games from the internet onto customer devices. While Apple has a strength in their App Store, it’s not a unique feature.
Apple is definitely a competitor in the portable games industry, but until they focus a device solely on games, they don’t have a chance to “be the games industry.”