The latest edition of LA Times technology blog makes a valid point about Apple’s presence at E3: their really wasn’t one. No big presser, no games on the show floor, and very few third-party titles being shown at any booths. That doesn’t mean that game publishers and developers aren’t developing the games, it just means that they apparently didn’t think it was all that important to show them off, I guess.
Two big publishers – EA Mobile and Disney Mobile had small presences by the Times’ accounting but they were mere afterthoughts to spaces dedicated to games like TRON, Battlefield, Medal of Honor and Epic Mickey. But it really brings in to focus the fact that Apple doesn’t "seem to" care all that much about gaming.
Disney Mobile sees the iPad and iPhone market growing and wants to be in the space: "In their overall budget we’re much smaller, but I think it’s something that Disney really sees as big and growing," Disney Mobile’s Tom Smith told the LA Times. "They want to be there. They want to be showing all of these great brands on these great devices."
While E3 attendees stood in line to check out the Medal of Honor and other games in EA’s line-up, EA Mobile personnel marched around the exhibit, armed with iPads and iPod Touches, to distract folks. A weird way to get people’s attention, for sure.
"The iPad gets overshadowed," Philip Cohen, one of those E3 operatives for EA Mobile, told the Times. "Handheld systems get lost in the excitement of flat screens, loud sounds and big flashy graphics."
But perhaps the main reason that Apple paid no heed to the biggest gaming event in the world its CEO Steve Jobs doesn’t quite understand it himself. During the All Things Digital’s D8 conference in L.A. this month he said that the iPhone and iPod Touch "created a new class of gaming" but that that class was a "subset of casual gaming."
That description isn’t likely to inspire development studios inside big companies like EA and Ubisoft, even though all can see the potential of the iPhone or iPad as a powerful gaming systems..