EA's Peter Moore Questions Role of Dedicated Handhelds
With smart phones and tablets becoming ubiquitous and more and more popular for gaming, are handhelds needed anymore?
iPhone and iPad continue to sell at a rapid clip, and the average consumer these days may be more inclined to game on these platforms than a dedicated handheld. That's potentially a problem for Nintendo's 3DS and Sony's PS Vita, and it's something EA COO Peter Moore recently discussed.
When asked about Vita by Sydney Morning Herald, he responded, "I think Sony does brilliant hardware, as we all know. I think the broader question is what is the role of dedicated handheld gaming years from now? More and more we see the ubiquity of smart-phones and tablets, how does a dedicating gaming device fit in, add value, and still get the same volumes that it needs in terms of hardware that we were used to in the golden days of Game Boys and PSP? So I think the broader question is what is the role of a dedicated device compared to these relatively cost-effective tablets and smart-phones that have great screens and plenty of buttons to control the game with?"
That's the question, of course, that the entire industry is asking. After all, in just one weekend, Apple's new iPhone 4S managed to sell enough to match the entire installed base of the 3DS.
Moore remains somewhat optimistic about 3DS, but he noted that this holiday season will be hugely important for Nintendo.
"To their credit I think they saw that they had a sell-through issue and they dropped their price. I think it's going to be an interesting test for them this Christmas, I think we're all hoping it will be a tremendous Christmas present," he said. "I think it is aimed at a younger consumer for the most part. We continue to look at it. We have FIFA coming out on it. We have Madden in the U.S. on it. Like any device we wish it all the best and we will monitor it and watch the sell-throughs and if there are business opportunities to bring new content, different content, or bring some of our great brands there in the future on top of what we have already committed then we will certainly do that."