Google Developing Game Console, Rumour Suggests Apple Are Too

Whilst everyone’s excited about the next-generation of consoles, it won’t be long before the ever shifting market opens up to at least one more entry into the array. This week the Ouya console launched (more on that in a few days) but today a story has emerged that points to Google [via the Wall Street Journal, GAF] bringing out their own Android-powered device.

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“Google Inc. is developing a videogame console and digital wrist watch powered by its Android operating system,” says the paper, “according to people familiar with the matter, as the Internet company seeks to spread the software’s domination beyond smartphones and tablets and cement build the company‘s reputation as a hardware maker.”

“Games that run on Android software have proved particularly popular, and they are growing much more quickly than games made for the big-name consoles supplied by Microsoft Corp., Sony Corp. and Nintendo Co. The appeal of such games has prompted the development of new devices aimed specifically for Android by other hardware companies.”

That much is undeniable. But here’s the interesting bit: “Google is hoping to combat similar devices that Apple Inc. may release in the future, according to the people familiar with the matter.”

Apple has concentrated heavily on ensuring that – like Android – its own App Store is heavily populated with games of all types and genres. A dedicated home console in the shape of an Apple TV could be huge. If both Google and Apple present their own devices in 2014, the war for the home market could be about to shift considerably.

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25 Comments

  1. I would have thought Google would have either back ouya or buy them out unless Google is waiting to see how popular ouya is before they launch there assault

  2. Nice idea. Google could bundle in a version of Google TV which hasn’t really taken off so far. Yup, good idea all round for Google (and apple).
    Though the console/box might sit under/next to the TV, I can’t see it being a real contender for the core gamer but, the more casual market is huge and it opens up so many possibilities for the big G.

  3. Every pirate’s dream!

  4. Google won’t want to be left out if Apple head in this direction but I’m no sure if it’s the wisest move for them.

    Android/iOS games are okay on phones and some times bearable on tablets but do you really want to sit in front of a TV to play them? They’re more time wasters on the move rather than something you take time out of your day to play.

    Price is their big advantage but you can’t just take a mobile game and dump it on a 40/50inch + TV. Development costs will increase, then the risk increases and with the size of the App store and Play store games get lost a lot more easily. When the cost is higher that becomes a bigger concern.

    I can see a Google entertainment box were Android games can be bought but only as something on the side. These won’t be consoles that we see at the moment.

    • What you said. I don’t see the “casual” gamers playing those Facebook and Android/iOS games on a TV screen…

      • There’s also the machine pricing to consider. Ouya is £100 but they reckon it will be replaced every 1-2 years. So over a PS4 lifecycle you’ll pay a lot more of Ouya to stay at the top spec and be able to play everything.

        I dread to think what Apple would charge for a yearly updated console.

      • the thing is, people play these Android games normally when they are bored or on the bus/train/waiting for someone etc.

        I can’t imagine many people would sit down infront of the TV to play these sort of games, when they can switch on a PS4/Xbox One instead.

      • Any game worth playing on a PS/Xbox etc… generally gets ported anyway.

        I can’t see myself ever sitting down to play angry birds on the TV over say the last of us. Maybe something like the walking dead but that’s already on main consoles.

        They’ll also need a must have game. MS had Halo, Sony have a large amount of developers than give them games like The last of us, Gran Turismo, Killzone etc… and Nintendo have Mario (in all his forms). Google or Apple would probably need to buy an EA or someone but if they were available then why wouldn’t a Sony or MS go for them too.

  5. If it was incorporated with TV, then I can see it working, but other than that it I can’t see it.

  6. This can go either way. Maybe people will get into it, maybe they won’t. I play Android games on my phone, but to go and buy a console for them, I don’t know.
    The thing is, it might become a heaven for the indie developers.
    Either way, I do not think it can compete with the big consoles that offer the AAA experience.
    But hey! Maybe will see the rebirth of the arcade games.

    • What you say leaves that middle-ground for someone like Apple or Google to swoop in on. A cheap(ish) console with oodles of light/fun games that people often enjoy on their mobiles but can also enjoy at home in the comfort of their own living room, etc.

      For me, there are a few titles on the iPhone that I’d quite like to play on the big screen and have a proper controller to use. If either of them are thinking about this, fill your boots! The more the merrier.

  7. I dread to think how much an Apple Gaming Console would cost.

    • They only ever want to do premium items so it feels a bit weird thinking that they would come in with a console for the home and NOT have it compete with the major players. Hmm…not sure about Apple doing this at all. Google, I could definitely see giving it a go.

      • I can see Samsung doing it but using Android within the system somewhere.

    • Based off of their typical business models, I would guess:

      Apple console = $2300
      Google console = free?

  8. It’s clear something is coming from at least one of them because Sony and MS are already reacting.

    MS have decided to go down the TV route so there is little new that Apple or Google can bring on the TV side.

    Sony has gone for the Indie developers so that will almost nothing worth playing you can’t already get on their console.

    • Maybe… or it was a reaction to the mobile gaming world and how people thought it was “the end of home consoles as we know it” so both Sony and MS diversified in their own unique direction. Then again, you could be spot on, fella.

      For me, a console maker has never been in tune with what I want from a console so much. Sony has absolutely nailed it with regards to attitude, games, indie games, hardware, franchises, etc. Sure, it’s not for everyone but right now… the knickers are off already! :-)

  9. I don’t understand why the likes of Ouya and other consoles are needed, handhelds like Nvidia’s Shield thingy is fine but consoles? meh. I’d rather stick with Playstation and Nintendo or something bravely similar.

  10. It seems just about everyone is releasing an Android console, going to be interesting to see what route they go to get folks’s money.

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