Forbes backs Apple to challenge DS
Ahead of anticipated App Store launch.
Forbes is anticipating that Apple will launch the long-promised App Store feature next week, allowing outside developers to sell iPhone and iPod Touch applications - potentially positioning the company as a new and dangerous foe for Nintendo's DS handheld, GamesIndustry.biz reports.
The magazine's analysis notes that developers continue to create ever more sophisticated games for Nintendo's four year-old handheld, and that Apple has struggled with gaming on the Mac. Nevertheless, the author thinks Apple may be a threat due to the fact that the company's products have both a touch-screen interface and motion-sensing accelerometers - features which have been popular separately with the DS and the Wii.
In addition, the ability to download software into the iPhone wirelessly may be a selling point for developers. The DS allows users to run demo versions of games downloaded from special retail kiosks and other users, and in some cases supports wireless multiplayer games using a single game card, but the storage is only temporary.
Apple introduced an iPhone development kit earlier this year, showing versions of Super Monkey Ball and Spore running on the device during a demonstration of the technology.
Only time will tell if the multi-touch screen and accelerometers, third party support and a huge installed base will make gaming a success on Apple's iPhone and iPod Touch - but even so, the company is unlikely to significantly threaten Nintendo any time soon. After all, Sony's PSP - which offers multimedia and phone capabilities similar to Apple's products - hasn't caught up with sales of the DS in the three years that it has been on the market.
For more armchair analysis, check out GamesIndustry.biz' editorial on the subject.