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Zeemote JS1 due on sale this month

Zeemote JS1 due on sale this month
Zeemote's innovative JS1 Bluetooth controller for mobile games is due on sale in at least one European country this month, according to VP of sales and business development Jim Adams.

"Our go-to-market strategy is focusing on Europe," he says. "You will see Zeemote JS1 controllers in the market at retail within the next two weeks, bundled with a handset and Zeemote-ready games."

Zeemote isn't announcing which handset maker it's partnering with yet, but Adams confirms that the bundle will be rolling out country-by-country over the coming months.

The early days of the JS1 controller saw a number of developers sign up to support it in their games, but it'll be vital to get larger publishers on board too. How's that going?

"We now have 13 of the top 15 publishers making their games Zeemote ready," says Adams. "In fact, 'Zeemote Ready' is a new brand that you'll see at launch. It's the brand name for our certification program to ensure a software title meets our specification and best deployment practices."

That means Zeemote is getting into the testing game, which could be interesting if the number of titles ramps up swiftly following the device's launch.

Will Zeemote Ready be a consumer-facing brand though? How will mobile gamers know which titles will and won't work with their JS1 controllers?

"We envision carriers and other partners merchandising a Zeemote Ready area, so consumers can tell if a game is Zeemote-ready or not," says Adams.

However, he says Zeemote has no plans to sell games D2C. "At this point in time, we have no plans to sell games ourselves. But we will be relaunching our website as an information resource, pointing people to all the Zeemote-ready games in our ecosystem."

One of the key selling points of the JS1 is the fact that its analogue joystick is much better for gaming than traditional (digital) keypad controls.

Yet you could argue that the buzz around motion-sensing and touchscreen phones threatens to steal Zeemote's thunder, since these technologies effectively provide analogue game controls without the need for a peripheral.

Adams isn't worried. "We think the JS1 will be a very nice option for those people with touchscreen-based phones."

What about the iPhone then – could the JS1 be released for that as a standalone accessory?

Adams says it's not on Zeemote's current agenda, mainly for technical reasons – the iPhone's lack of support for the JSR-82 Bluetooth protocol that allows Bluetooth controllers to be used.
Contributing Editor

Stuart is a freelance journalist and blogger who's been getting paid to write stuff since 1998. In that time, he's focused on topics ranging from Sega's Dreamcast console to robots. That's what you call versatility. (Or a short attention span.)

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Christian Lohr Co-Founder at Deep Silver Fishlabs
what games do i get for the zeemote ? Gameloft ? EA ? fishlabs ? Infusio ? What are the 13 of 15 Major Publishers ?

Will this device fly ?
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