Develop 2012: PlayStation Mobile to let indies 'compete on a fair playing field'

#developconf Consumers still trust brand

Develop 2012: PlayStation Mobile to let indies 'compete on a fair playing field'
Sony's PlayStation Mobile presentation at Develop Brighton seemed to focus on stressing two potentially conflicting ideas.


Firstly, PlayStation remains a huge mainstream consumer brand, but on the other hand, it's also the perfect home for small, potentially niche titles from indies.

According to senior account manager Agostino Simonetta, however, that means PlayStation Mobile provides the best of both worlds - particularly for developers left high and dry by the competition on the App Store.Brand power

"Consumers know they can trust the PlayStation brand," opened Simonetta.

"It's always been synonymous with quality. Years ago, 'PlayStation' replaced the word 'console' for most people – for my mother, it wasn't an Xbox or a Dreamcast, it was a PlayStation, and that hasn't changed today."

PlayStation Mobile will work across Sony's suite of products – including PS Vita, Sony smartphones and tablets, and selective Android handsets from HTC – but will exist as a distinct platform to native stores on those respective platforms.

That's important, claimed Simonetta, because it will allow indies to "compete on a fair playing field", rather than attempting to take on triple A releases in the main stores.

All good with Vita

He still estimated that PlayStation Mobile will draw consumers in, however, given PlayStation users – in his view – tend to be "big spenders."

"We are giving you a tool that allows you to reach our huge userbase," he added.

"Those are dedicated consumers that engage with the content and come back on a weekly basis. They are big spenders."

Countering any suggestions PS Vita has got off to an especially slow start, Simonetta claimed the handheld is "quite a successful device already", also boasting a "very engaged audience" eager to download games.

Early sales reports, however, suggest Vita has sold just a fraction of what PSP managed in the UK in its opening months.

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