Sony Ericsson is reportedly building a gaming platform based on Android 3.0, the build code-named Gingerbread, for October. Engadget says the device is a gaming controller-mobile phone hybrid.
Sony Ericsson, maker of the Xperia
X10 Android handset
that is launching on AT&T's network Aug. 15, is building a gaming
platform based on Android.
Sony Ericsson did not respond to eWEEK's request for comment, but Engadget,
which broke the news, said the platform comprises a device running Google's
Android 3.0 operating system (code-named Gingerbread).
The controller is described as a phone with game controls in place of a
QWERTY keyboard. The gadget will have an elongated touch pad for analog
controls, along with standard PSP buttons and shoulder buttons.
The phone has a 3.7 inch to 4.1 inch screen with WVGA or better resolution,
possibly a 5 megapixel camera and potentially a 1GHz Snapdragon processor.
Engadget said in addition to Android 3.0 there will be a new area of the
Android Market specifically for games running on this device. Titles created
for the Sony device might be ported to other Android phones capable of
"Games will be graphically in the range of PSX or PSP games, meaning
true 3D gaming is headed to Android," Engadget noted.
"Titles currently being shown off seem to be focused around some older
PSX as well as new PSP offerings, with God of War, Call of Duty: Modern
Warfare and LittleBigPlanet possibly on tap, and future plans for
titles which incorporate augmented reality features."
In embracing Android for phones and gaming, Gartner analyst Ken Dulaney told
eWEEK that Sony could be taking a page from Apple's playbook, as the iPod Touch
gaming device and iPhone share the same operating system.
Sony's device could come as early as October, though this is a stretch for
eWEEK to believe. October is only a couple months away and there is a lot that
isn't known about the device. In fact, most of what Engadget reported seems
malleable or speculative.
What has been well carved out is Android's reputation as a mobile platform
for communications and entertainment devices for consumers. Android is running
on about 70 handsets and Android 2.1 will be the basis for Google TV in fall
Google itself is said to be getting more involved with online gaming, adding
a big, "Why not?" to Engadget's suggestion that Sony Ericsson and
Google are working on the Sony gaming phone together.
Google recognizes the rising popularity of games
on the Internet and if it can somehow get
people gaming on Android that will open up more opportunities to put ads in
front of its users.
Indeed, Google invested $100 Million in Zynga
to build Google Games as
part of an alleged social network,
and recently acquired social widget maker Slide
for $228 million.