iPod Touch: The New Age Gameboy

It’s a device that originated while most of today’s tech generation were just learning to walk, and it took the world by storm.

Of course I’m talking about Nintendo’s Gameboy. The nice monochromatic display, the flat gray casing, and who would forget the monolithic size of the device… but all this aside, the Gameboy completed us. Today the iPod touch has grown into a device synonymous with personal entertainment, productivity, and practicality. However the iPod touch has a few extra features that set it a bit above the Gameboy competition.

Back in the day it was a child’s dream to have a Gameboy, whether it was being used in the home, on the road for those family trips, or as a means of playing Tetris against your buddies at recess. It was an incredible device for its time.

When I was eight my Gameboy was my pride and joy, there wasn’t much else. It is sad to say but I feel the same about my iPod touch. Some would argue that they are totally different devices and thus incomparable. In retrospect however, the Gameboy changed the portable market just as the iPod touch and iPhone have done.

The Gameboy set the stages for portable gaming, they were among the first mass produced portable gaming consoles in color, later they allowed people to play against their friends wirelessly, now with the DSi releasing next year, you can take photos and browse the Internet. Given the iPod and Gameboy families are fundamentally different, it is still safe to assume that the Gameboy and iPod families have certainly started sharing the same side of the street.

The Gameboy is still highly regarded as a gaming system and this will hinder its sales among older more adult crowds simply because the Gameboy or DS is still regarded as a Gaming device that has a built in Calendar, Browser, and touch screen sensitivity. However when a shopper purchases an iPod touch or iPhone they are thinking that this is a device that can play music, browse the Internet, and it can also play games.

The portable gaming market has long been in need of an overhaul if they are looking to compete with the iPhone. One of the primary reasons for this is the iPhone’s untethered existence. Unlike the leading portable gaming consoles, there is no need for cartridges, a charger, or even money (aside from the cost of the device). In all practicality it wouldn’t be all the difficult to actually own an iPod touch or iPhone without a computer, since you can buy and download directly to the device. This feature is key in developing future technologies for portable gaming, and because of this fact I believe the next generation of portable gaming is going to adopt many similar features as to those of the iPod touch and iPhone

The iPhone has laid the groundwork for the next generation of portable gaming, and as a result the lines between the cell phone market’s “mobile gaming” and true portable gaming are starting to blur.

So in conclusion how do you think the iPod touch and iPhone have changed the portable gaming market, or do you think they are two separate entities that should not be compared?