Sony plans big push into mobile gaming under the PlayStation banner
Sony has long harbored mobile gaming ambitions although devices like the PlayStation Portable (PSP) and PlayStation Vita never enjoyed the popularity of Nintendo’s handhelds. It even tried its hand at a PlayStation phone, the Sony Ericsson Xperia Play that was a slider phone with physical gaming controls hidden beneath the display. This time around, it looks like it is taking a different approach by focusing on bringing its top franchises more widely to smartphones.
A new job posting for a Head of Mobile position based in either San Mateo or Los Angeles, California has spilled the beans on the company's renewed mobile gaming ambitions. The new position will oversee the development of “the mobile games strategy for PlayStation Studios and help build a foundation for future growth opportunities.” Intriguingly, the position will also focus on “successfully adapting PlayStation’s most popular franchises for mobile,” which will undoubtedly whet the appetite of PlayStation fans.
It isn’t, however, clear what Sony’s approach to translating its games to mobile will mean exactly. Straight up ports of some of its classic console games could work in some instances, but it is also equally likely that Sony might reimagine some of its franchises as specially tailored mobile games like its sole existing mobile title Run Sackboy! Run!. The key to its success, however, will be the way Sony plans on monetizing its titles. If it tries to “nickel and dime” customers with mods and upgrades, bury them in ads or overcharge, its latest mobile gaming endeavors could also fall over as in the past.