updated 01:10 pm EST, Fri February 15, 2008
Apple push into gaming
Apple may be making a large push into the game industry, after several patents revolving around gaming were filed recently. According to European developers magazine Develop, the patents indicate that something big could be happening, considering Apple's history with gaming, from the unsuccessful Pippin Atmark to the iPod games that began in 2006. The patents mention toys, games, handheld devices, and LCD game machines, among others.
A senior development source close to Develop says for users "hold [their] breath for an announcement of an 'iGame' console just yet." The source also says that Apple is most likely just preparing to release another slew of iPod games, possibly including the Touch and iPhone.
Initially offering titles from Electronic Arts, PopCap, as well as titles developed by an internal games team, Apple is now hosting titles from Sega, Hudson Soft, Gameloft, Harmonix, Namco, and NaNaOn-Sha.
In an interview with Develop's sister Magazine, MCV, Sega of America COO Simon Jeffery praised the iTunes/iPod game system, saying the banking and payment system is "flawless". He also notes that the iPods, using OpenGL ES, are "powerful enough" to be viewed as a viable gaming platform.
With the impending release of the iPod touch and iPhone software developers kit, it is anticipated that many third party game developers will be able to implement games on the device, taking advantage of the coveted touchscreen.