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GameStop considers launching gaming tablet as the retailer looks to shift to digital distribution

GameStop considers launching gaming tablet as the retailer looks to shift to digital distribution
It's all tablets these days.

Still, the prospect of a retailer launching a tablet is unexpected, though that's exactly what US-based chain GameStop is proposing, as the company looks to avoid being left behind by the rise in digital downloads.

The firm's attitude is, if existing manufacturers don't produce a device that fits the bill, GameStop is more than willing to.

Taking control

"If we can work with our partners and the OEMs and they come up with a great tablet that is enabled with a great gaming experience and coupled with a bluetooth controller, then there's no need to go out and develop our own," president Tony Bartel told Gamasutra.

"But if we can't find one that's great for gaming, then we will create our own."

Bartel believes tablets could act as the next big frontier for gaming, and GameStop is looking to have a hand in the industry's transition.

It's vital for the chain's future that the company doesn't get left behind as other retailers have been as the digital distribution of games becomes the norm.

"Our customers are beginning to consume games in a hybrid manner, both physical and digital, so we are becoming a hybrid company to meet their needs," he added.

The price is wrong

But despite GameStop's enthusiasm for the tablet market, the retailer is concerned by the pricing models adopted by publishers operating on mobile app stores.

"Our whole premise is there are a lot of people caught up in the 99 cent fray and a lot of people are frustrated by that," said Bartel.

"We really believe that's a chance for us to lead the tablet playing field.

"Just like people create [lower-priced, immersive] games for the PC, we think people will begin to create immersive games for a higher price for the tablets. Someone needs to offer those games, and that's something GameStop will be the leader in doing."

[source: Gamasutra]

With a fine eye for detail, Keith Andrew is fuelled by strong coffee, Kylie Minogue and the shapely curve of a san serif font.

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