Saturday, September 1, 2007

Secrets of the PlayStation Phone: Part Five

A Fork in the Road?

The PlayStation Phone gets its own development team. But how will it effect the current PlayStation Portable? Is this an example of diversifying the brand, or is Sony getting ready to jump ship?

Lets see what the folks at have to say about this subject.

Sony planning to launch mobile games in Europe

SCEE to bring first-party PS3 games to phones?

"Sony Computer Entertainment Europe (SCEE) is planning to move into mobile games, according to the new issue of Mobile Entertainment magazine.

What does that mean? Potentially a bunch of its first-party PS2 and PS3 games getting mobile conversions – the mag cites This Is Football, The Getaway and Primal as three examples, along with the frankly less-likely SingStar and EyeToy brands.

SCEE has apparently appointed former THQ Wireless executive Balbir Blugan as its head of mobile business development, to figure out how it should move into mobile.

It's possible that SCEE will develop and publish its own games, although the examples of Codemasters, Konami and Sega hint that partnering with a mobile publisher may be an easier way in, at least in the short-term. does show how seriously console firms are taking the mobile market – and also that Sony clearly thinks mobile versions of its top titles won't negatively affect sales on PSP. "

Could Sony honestly be foolish enough to believe this last statement? In essence this means thier PlayStation phone would be competing directly with the current PlayStation Portable. All of the company's mega hit software on two different platforms.

When the Nintendo Co. launched their highly successful "Nintendo DS," their GameBoy Advance portable was selling almost a half million units a month. And this was in the United States alone.

Nintendo claimed they were taking a "third pillar" approach to the market. Meaning they would support two hand helds and a video game console all at the same time. Most people saw this as a bluff, feeling that Nintendo had no confidence in their new dual screen portable, and that it was merely a hold over to fend off Sony's advancement into the portable market.

Two years later the Nintendo DS rules the portable market and the GameBoy franchise is dead. The 3rd pillar strategy only wound up breaking one of the 3 pillars.

So this raises an interesting point. The original PSP has never done as well as either the Nintendo DS or the GBA. What does this mean for the future of Sony's floundering portable?