Mimicry is the highest form of flattery or, in some cases, competition. This time, a cheap Chinese knock-off company trying to grab headlines is not our subject, but rather one of the Goliath’s of portable gaming: Sony. According to PocketGamer, an inside source has admitted Sony’s chagrine at lately being eclipsed by the brouhaha riddled iPhone – considering the iPhone’s gaming success and first rate online store, this is hardly an eye-blinker.
What is surprising is Sony’s need to clean ship and peddle its designs and hardware functionality to mimic a newcomer. Sony are not always close-lipped; like Apple, they tend to overbuff some of their releases with insider reviews, but when have Sony needed to react to a phone by including multi-touch technology? The DSi store and iPhone App Store have blown in the perfect storm for Sony who in hard times, need to react quickly with smart decisions.
Dual analogue sticks and dedicated buttons may be whuffie enough to take spotlight for a brief few moments until the press and consumers alike realise that Sony are only playing the “me too” game. Then we find out who will sit at the sidelines and who will score wins. Considering that the Apple devices debuted with little software other than some webos apps and a hack-and-code homebrew community, there is good reason for reaction from both Sony and Nintendo.
OS 3.0 may spell failure or stunted market for either of Apple’s gaming competitors depending on how well third party hardware addons are implemented. Imagine gaming on a big screen with analogue and touch controls – on your iPhone. That image is likely burning deeply into Sony’s corporate heart and even if PocketGamer’s news is at last just a hopeful rumour, Sony surely are rushing to update their console which looks to be less of a player in the portable gaming pitch.