An analyst with Prudential research firm has expressed belief that Apple Computer may create a game console sometime in future as a part of its battle with Microsoft, Sony and others for living rooms and entertainment hardware and services. Given that computers from Apple are not very suitable for gaming, the analyst may be just right.
“We think the videogame market represents a distinct possibility for Apple, especially considering that it recently announced the availability of videogames for its iPod through its iTunes store,” Prudential analyst Jesse Tortora said in a note to clients, excepts from where were published by GamesIndustry.biz web-site.
But Apple is known for revealing products that are very innovative and are generally new to the market, therefore, the company may not just launch another game console, especially keeping in mind the exceptionally competitive market of game machines with very strong companies fighting for both market share and new customers adoption. For Apple, it may be crucial to create a “centre of the home entertainment” – a phrase that Microsoft and Sony use to describe the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. In order to design such a device, Apple could use already existing technologies.
“The game console device could be morphed out of some combination of the Mac mini and iTV, while the handheld player could be developed as an enhancement for a future version of the widescreen iPod,” explained the analyst.
But in the game console world their designers usually have to subsidize initial manufacturing of the machines by up to several hundreds of dollars per unit in a bid to recoup those costs by selling lucrative games, whereas Apple has historically made money on selling hardware.
In addition to adopt a new business model, Apple needs to create relationships with game developers and publishers in order to persuade them to make games for the console. Besides, the company will have to contact hardware designers to develop technical specification for the console. It is interesting to note that IBM, whose processors are essentially found in all three new-generation game consoles – PlayStation 3, Wii and Xbox 360 – no longer supplies PowerPC processors to Apple, whose modern computers run Intel chips.
Given that there is a distinct trend towards hardware tailored for one task, Apple Computer may truly need a game console to establish its presence in the living rooms. However, considering the exceptional competition on the market, it may be possible that Apple will not develop its own game console, but will establish a very close relationship with one of the console players, or even acquire an already established console brand or a startup with a feasible game console project.