Apple throws down the gauntlet

Apple throws down the gauntlet
Michael French

By Michael French

September 9th 2009 at 6:46PM

Buying experience for DS and PSP is poor says marketing boss

The competition between iPhone, PSP and DS is hotting up - Apple used its iPod showcase event today to highlight its position in comparison to other handheld games platforms.

Specifically, the firm moved to crticise the buying experience for the DS and PSP in comparison to the iPhone and iPod Touch.

"When [DS and PSP] came out, they seemed so cool. But once you play a game on the iPod touch, you think 'hey, these things aren't so cool any more..." said Apple's marketing VP Phil Schiller.

"We're talking about 25, 30, 40 dollars a title. The kids can't afford those titles. Worse isn't the price, it's the buying experience."

A demo slide at the event compared the quantity of games on the platforms: PSP's 607 games, DS' 3,680 and then iPod touch's 21,178, before kicking into a video montage of App Store games.

Apple then showcased a number of new iPhone/iPod Touch games to prove the point.

These included an Assassin's Creed II game for the iPhone coming from Ubisoft (not, intriguingly, the developer of the original Assassin's Creed game, Gameloft).

Meanwhile Tapulous, creator of Tap Tap Revenge, also demoed Riddim Ribbon, its latest music game, which launches in October with three special Black Eyed Peas "content bundles".

Gameloft did debut later with a new FPS called Nova, while EA also showed off the iPhone version of its venerable Madden NFL 2010 title.

Apple's showcase was designed to promote a raft of new services and products, including the new iTunes 9 and new iPod hardware - however, with games given such a lengthy moment in the spotlight, it's clear the firm is taking games development and its relationship with the industry very seriously.

Click here for a full blow-by-blow report on this evening's event, from our sister site ME's liveblog