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Businesses Handhelds Apple Hardware Entertainment Games

Apple Snags Former Xbox Exec 190

Posted by kdawson
from the recruiting-games dept.
nandemoari sends along word that Apple has picked up Richard Teversham, a senior Executive from Microsoft's European Xbox operations, ending his 15 years of service to Redmond. Some press accounts assume that Teversham's role may lie in beefing up the games scene on the iPhone and iPod Touch. Forbes goes farther, opining that Apple "appears to be preparing an all-out assault on the handheld gaming market." Other reporting associates the hire with Apple's recent buildout of chip-design expertise.
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Apple Snags Former Xbox Exec

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  • Re:Sweet (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Kuukai (865890) on Monday May 04, 2009 @08:32PM (#27824471) Journal
    They didn't make the Xbox from scratch, they made it from a computer...
  • by ifeelswine (1546221) on Monday May 04, 2009 @08:32PM (#27824473) Journal
    the atari lynx was somewhere between an atari 800xl and an amiga. stereo sound, 4096 colors. you could flip the atari lynx's display around 180 degrees to accommodate lefties. it had networking built in so you could link up with your pals. the downside was that none of your pals HAD an atari lynx. while you were playing chips challenge or california games in full color with great sound they were playing tetris on a monochrome gameboy. was there a company more incompetent than tramiel's atari corporation?
  • by chris098 (536090) on Monday May 04, 2009 @08:34PM (#27824487) Homepage
    I can see some potential here. The iPhone as a gaming platform has been proven in the market already. There are a number of small developers selling games for the iPhone. Probably not because the iPhone is a great platform, but because people are willing to pay small amounts to amuse themselves while they're on the subway or waiting somewhere, and they happen to have their iPhone on them. It's like a Nintendo DS that's smaller and you always have with you - it's a convenience thing. Game developers realized this, and the apple store made it easy to distribute products. A small bit of attention to make the device more game-friendly could make it even more attractive for developers to target this platform.
  • by Starayo (989319) on Monday May 04, 2009 @09:17PM (#27824923) Homepage
    Without a huge upgrade to battery life I don't see it being good for anything but casual games, and while not necessarily a bad thing, when I hear "gaming platform", I don't think of that genre. It just seems wrong to call it a gaming platform to me.
  • by tepples (727027) <tepples&gmail,com> on Monday May 04, 2009 @09:21PM (#27824969) Homepage Journal

    I think that at this point in time, Apple releasing a gaming console would make as much brand sense as IBM releasing an IBM branded gaming console.

    That's what people said about Microsoft in 2001, and the newcomer's product tied Nintendo GameCube in worldwide hardware sales.

  • by chris098 (536090) on Monday May 04, 2009 @09:23PM (#27824983) Homepage
    Yeah for sure, it's certainly not going to be equivalent to an xbox 360, or even a wii. ...but apple has proven that there's money to be made in very casual games that you may pick up for 20 minutes a day during a subway ride or while waiting at the dentist. People have shown that they're interested in being entertained in that casual sort of way.

    It's definitely not as glamorous as a PS3, but they're a completely different market.
  • by wondercool (460316) on Monday May 04, 2009 @09:24PM (#27824995) Homepage

    PLEASE

    They don't make a difference, for every 'HOT' exec there are 10's (100's) of other brilliant people capable of doing the same thing.

    Articles like this confirm the current executive manager payment scheme (overpayment by SHIT loads) that is one of the factors of the economic crisis

  • Cherry-picking. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by jcr (53032) <.jcr. .at. .mac.com.> on Monday May 04, 2009 @09:27PM (#27825035) Journal

    Marketing was one thing Microsoft did very well in the Xbox debacle. If they'd picked up any of the people responsible for quality control, I'd have been worried.

    -jcr

  • Re:This just in.. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by joe_bruin (266648) on Monday May 04, 2009 @09:34PM (#27825095) Homepage Journal

    Apple makes you program in the painful language of Objective C or some other language that Apple deems as necessary but most programmers cry out in agony.

    What's wrong with Objective C? You can mix Objective C and "pure" C / C++ in the same project. Any decent C++ programmer can pick up Objective C / Objective C++ in one day of practice[1]. Obj-C is a superset of C, all of your favorite tricks still work. You can program it on Linux or Cygwin using GnuStep [gnustep.org] and gcc (though admittedly getting it going is kind of a pain). If you really hate it that much, you can get away with writing a pretty thin wrapper of Obj-C to interface to the OSX specific APIs (most of your calls will probably be standard libc calls in C anyway), and have almost all of your code in C/C++. I don't see how it would be an obstacle to anyone.

    [1] No True Scotsman would doubt this comment.

  • by Renderer of Evil (604742) on Monday May 04, 2009 @09:35PM (#27825109) Homepage

    With Jobs on the sidelines, we're back to the Sculley era at Apple...

    You're talking out of your ass. Jobs is not [macworld.com] on the sidelines. He's too much of a control freak to let Tim Cook or anyone else sabotage the juggernaut he helped to create. If you think Sculley's Apple will make a comeback then you're mistaken and don't know history.

    Apple isn't desperate for low-level buzz dealing with obscure hirings. They can leak a single photo or make a "mistake" on the web store and dominate the news cycle for 2 weeks.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 04, 2009 @09:39PM (#27825155)

    Bollocks. You have nothing. Jobs is no more on "on the sidelines" than a starting quarterback is.

  • by UnknowingFool (672806) on Monday May 04, 2009 @11:47PM (#27826175)
    How about his for perspective:

    Apple launched 1 model. Didn't sell well amongst a crowded market and poor marketing and high price tag. It was cancelled after 100,000 models.

    MS launches 2 models of the Xbox. Both sell moderately well but at a loss. It takes MS 5 years to make a profit. Also during that time, their last model suffers major quality control issues that causes them $1.79 billion in extra repair charges on top of the $6 billion that they have already spent. Also the small profit disappears after two quarters. At the rate of profit, it will take MS somewhere between 12-15 years just to payback the original cost.

    If you were a stockholder in either company which one would you get more concerned about?

  • Re:Sweet (Score:4, Insightful)

    by interkin3tic (1469267) on Tuesday May 05, 2009 @12:57AM (#27826655)

    I thought the same thing, plus the following: who cares about either as an end user. "Waaa! These controllers are too similar, I'm always trying to plug the Xbox controller into the PS2 and vice versa!"

    What's so bad about similar controller designs? Do you hear people complaining about how the keyboard and mouse for a PC is so similar to the keyboard and mouse for the mac? No, it makes sense that they're going to be similar, convergent evolution, good design is good design.

    Too many games made for both systems? Put that another way: there were too few system exclusives for GP. Who the hell LIKES system exclusives besides the console companies themselves?!? "Woo! I don't get to play the game I want on the console I own! Awesome! Consumer choice sucks, hooray for monopolies!"

    I think someone has pride in one console or the other. Which is strange, because they're things you buy, not something that should affect your identity. Then again, I don't understand people who have pride in their local sports team, and a lot of people do, so maybe I'm off here...

  • Re:This just in.. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by dkf (304284) <donal.k.fellows@manchester.ac.uk> on Tuesday May 05, 2009 @02:06AM (#27827125) Homepage

    If you really hate it that much, you can get away with writing a pretty thin wrapper of Obj-C to interface to the OSX specific APIs (most of your calls will probably be standard libc calls in C anyway), and have almost all of your code in C/C++.

    While you are wrong about most calls to the OSX APIs being standard C calls (just not true for Cocoa apps) you should be aware that it is not that difficult to call Obj-C code using its conventions from plain old C. It does take a bunch of code but you really don't have to use Obj-C, despite it being easier (as in: less code to write and get right...)

    About the only thing that you could theoretically object to about Obj-C (in an "objective" fashion) is the fact that the Obj-C calling convention is slower than those of C and C++. (Sorry about the puns.) While I don't have the figures, I would note that this is not necessarily a problem in practice since the method dispatch low-level function is "hot" and cached.

  • by Anenome (1250374) on Tuesday May 05, 2009 @03:16AM (#27827501)

    Yes, and the DS version sells for 2-3 times the Iphone version. Ever wonder why? And why the consumer is okay with this?

    The guy in that video you linked says the Iphone version of the game is better because it is graphically superior and cheaper in cost. He clearly know little about the hand-held market and its history. Every competitor who's ever challenged Nintendo's decades long dominance of the hand-held sector has come at them with the same thing 'better looking' (though not always cheaper games, but usually more expensive hardware) and has been devastated. If the Iphone were only a gaming device it would likely suffer the same fate.

    So, you may think $10 for Assassin's Creed on the Iphone is a great deal. Sure. But what if you're the publisher? You might port the game to Iphone after making it for the DS and selling it there for awhile. But what if the DS was gone and Iphone was your primary system, could you afford to sell games at $10 a pop? No. So, publishers are not going to be happy with a $10 price for a game like AC. The only reason the price is so low anyway is because Apple no doubt put pressure on them to lower the price as much as possible, and they did it to test the waters.

    Lastly, the graphics are are only marginally better. The battery life is much worse. The control scheme is much worse (Iphone control scheme even takes up screen real-estate!). The durability of the Iphone is worse (no clamshell). And the cost of the Iphone itself it far, far, far higher. Children are not going to be buying it, nor teens, nor parents for children or teens. It costs more than a PS3!

    I assert again, Apple has no chance of displacing Nintendo in the hand-held market with the Iphone. It will continue to be at best a secondary market, a throw-away market, while the market-share remains with Nintendo.

  • Re:This just in.. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by IamTheRealMike (537420) <mike@plan99.net> on Tuesday May 05, 2009 @04:59AM (#27827935) Homepage

    What's wrong with Objective-C? How about the fact that it's based on C! How about the amazingly painful object initialization semantics? How about the fact that properties are locked by default? How about the fact that calling a method on a NULL pointer doesn't crash!

    I am amazed that anybody thinks highly of this language. Just read the language spec and count the WTFs. I mean, C and C++ at least have the excuse of being around since forever and letting you write almost 100% optimal code. But as you point out, Objective-C doesn't even produce optimal code, and it wouldn't be around at all if Apple hadn't gone down to the cemetery and resurrected its decaying body.

    But you don't have to believe me. If Objective-C was so great, it'd be used outside the Apple platform. It's not.

COMPASS [for the CDC-6000 series] is the sort of assembler one expects from a corporation whose president codes in octal. -- J.N. Gray

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