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March 23, 2010



1.5 yrs ago, i was in the mkt for a portable video + gaming device, here in India. PSP3000 was my 1st choice. When i went to buy it, here's what happened:

1) PSP had a hopeless 64 MB internal storage.
2) External memory supported was their proprietary MS Duo/MS Duo Pro.
3) Largest sized MS card was a piffling 4GB, at double the cost of other stds (CF/SD/etc).
4) Games were available on another proprietary format, UMDs, priced $10 & above. No downloading from an AppStore.

Walked next door to the Apple shop, bought an iPod touch 32GB & haven't looked back since, despite the smaller & lower res screen.

With the PSP phone, they cant afford the same mistakes. They need all the features of an iPhone (accelerometer/touch) + an AppStore with all the gazillions of PSP titles on tap optimized for the newer input methods. Else it might follow N-Gage to the dust heap.

Gijsbertjan van Breukelen

Actually, about Nintendo; The last few months I've been wondering what it would be like if Nintendo would team up with one of the big mobile manufacturers, probably Nokia.

Emulators for all Nintendo platforms for free in the Ovistore and the games for sale in the Ovistore. Prices varying from 0.99 euros for the oldest Gameboy and NES games to about 20 euros for the most recent DS and Wii games.
In my eyes this could be very profitable for both Nokia and Nintendo.

Nintendo has another channel through which they can sell their games, without having to invest in designing and producing their own phone, and Nokia a perfect gaming platform that has proven itself in the marketplace already.


Do not enough cash to buy some real estate? Don't worry, just because that's real to take the personal loans to solve all the problems. Hence get a sba loan to buy all you want.


Sony is the world leader in vasted potential in the consumer electronics market.

They are in the living room (Bravia TVs), they have their great Playstations there. While you watch your Bravia TV, you have your Sony Vaio notebook on your lap, your SonyEricsson is lying next to you. When you leave the house you also bring along your PSP.

But are these devices integrated? Do they know of each other? Can they seamlessly display Sony content from Sony Pictures and Sony published games (!! they even have content for god's sake!!)

No. (well there is a half hearted attempt, but the name says all about "integration": the "Playstation Network")
And even Microsoft is starting to get this, is aiming for game saves in the cloud :-)

Sony on the other hand, just announced that they would partner with Google on set top boxes, because they can't do it themselves.

And why does Sony fail so miserably? Because they are not a software company. And because they suffer the fate that most bloated, fragmented companies suffer that still get by kinda alright by continuing to do what they've always done.

Therefore I also think that a PSP phone (while it would certainly generate some buzz and high expectations) would probably be a failure.

Sony isn't exactly a fan of open platforms. (Playstations run Linux, but don't allow tempering with it any more. They push Bluray and HDMI, no comment necessary here). So they would choose their own proprietary OS or an addition to an OS. Even if the picked Android as platform they would still find a way to DRM the hell out of their contents. Nothing wrong with that from a corporate perspective, but it's so hard to do in a way that doesn't annoy the heck out of your customers (even Apple hasn't managed to do so entirely)

Sony doesn't (can't?) do cheap.
To win market share against Apple the would have to compete against sub-1-Dollar game prices. PSP games retail for 10-30 Euros.
But if they try to build an impressive installed base of devices quickly (which they will have to do to be attractive for games studios and developers) they will most likely have another loss leading device on their hands (Sony's still losing money on each sold Playstation). They'll most likely repeat that mistake with the PSP phone (or they'll have an unattractive hardware package)

So I agree that there would be potential in an SonyEricsson PSP, but I would be very surprised indeed if Sony could deliver this.

Heidi Fisk

you email must be blocking mine again. can you please respond to my request for another photo for the brochre..need high rez. also need high rez of book cover for Mobile as the 7th of Mass Media. WE go to press in on friday. please send asap...

again, sorry that i had to use your blog to reach you.


Romain Criton

Hi Tomi,
Great post, never thought about Nintendo making a phone but now that you mention it, it totally makes sense.
There are however 2 big challenges for them as well as Sony:
- a business challenge: they need to adapt to a new business model, because right now their revenue come from game licenses whereas in the Apple business model the revenue comes mainly from the hardware (the App Store accountq for a smaller portion)
- a technical challenge: if they really want their "gaming phones" to be a hit, they need some sort of backwards compatibility with existing games so that they can port quickly and cheaply their existing game portfolio to their new phones. So it's a bit more complicated than designing an Android phone with analog sticks

2 misc. comments also:
- you say Microsoft could "perhaps" enter the gaming phone market, well to me it seems they're going full steam in that direction with Windows Phone 7. And actually they're doing it pretty well since they're leveraging their existing Xbox technical platform in terms of online services and SDK
- regarding the N-Gage failure: I think the awkward form factor played an important role in this failure, the other factor being the lack of fast, widespread and affordable data connectivy at the time it was released (so yes they were a bit early too)

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    Tomi Ahonen is a bestselling author whose twelve books on mobile have already been referenced in over 100 books by his peers. Rated the most influential expert in mobile by Forbes in December 2011, Tomi speaks regularly at conferences doing about 20 public speakerships annually. With over 250 public speaking engagements, Tomi been seen by a cumulative audience of over 100,000 people on all six inhabited continents. The former Nokia executive has run a consulting practise on digital convergence, interactive media, engagement marketing, high tech and next generation mobile. Tomi is currently based out of Helsinki but supports Fortune 500 sized companies across the globe. His reference client list includes Axiata, Bank of America, BBC, BNP Paribas, China Mobile, Emap, Ericsson, Google, Hewlett-Packard, HSBC, IBM, Intel, LG, MTS, Nokia, NTT DoCoMo, Ogilvy, Orange, RIM, Sanomamedia, Telenor, TeliaSonera, Three, Tigo, Vodafone, etc. To see his full bio and his books, visit Tomi Ahonen lectures at Oxford University's short courses on next generation mobile and digital convergence. Follow him on Twitter as @tomiahonen. Tomi also has a Facebook and Linked In page under his own name. He is available for consulting, speaking engagements and as expert witness, please write to tomi (at) tomiahonen (dot) com

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