One of the biggest allures attracting fans to the new iPad is its high-resolution Retina display. The enhanced visuals make the device an optimal gaming outlet, allowing tablets to stake a claim in the console and PC-dominated video game universe.
Apple may be taking this gaming experience one step further by quelling the concerns of those opposed to touch screen controls. The company is in the process of working on a physical game controller to accompany its iOS devices, according to AnandTech.
I know of an internal Apple project to bring a physical controller to the market, but whether or not it will ever see the light of day remains to be seen, the report reads. As smartphones and tablets come close to equaling the performance of current gaming consoles, I feel like the controller problem must be addressed.
The addition of a controller would make the iOS platform a worthy competitor in the virtual gaming world, crossing the border from casual mobile players to hardcore gamers. Here are a few reasons why we'd like to see the iPad become more prominent in the gaming industry:
1. Portability. With the flat, sleek design of the new Apple iPad, players will be able to easily take their games on the go. Although no details about an external controller have been confirmed, it is likely that Apple would produce a slim remote to accompany its product. This means that the gadget could be transported to a friend's house without a problem, or back and forth from a college campus.
2. Cross-compatibility. Wouldn't it be wonderful to be able to play the Torchlight or Portal game downloaded onto your MacBook on your iPad? Cross compatibility could be an interesting concept to tie in between iOS devices. The possibility of integrating apps with larger games can enhance gameplay, such as interactive walkthrough guides and bonus modifications. Of course, this only really benefits hardcore Mac enthusiasts. Apple isn't known for strong customization and compatibility with other operating systems. The PC is traditionally known for dominating the computer-gaming industry, but if Apple beefs up its platform that could easily change.
3. Sharp images. The new iPad boasts some of the most cutting edge visuals in the mobile industry. The Retina display contributed to a large portion of consumers that were satisfied with Apple's latest product, according to a report from PC Mag. Seeing these visual enhancements applied to the elements of gaming could prove to be a worthwhile experience. Major developers such as Electronic Arts and Crytek are brainstorming ways to translate their titles to the iOS sphere, according to a report from Reuters.
4. Convenient digital downloads. There is a certain novelty and nostalgia to purchasing a game hard copy, being able to hold the disc and flip through the informational booklet that you'll probably never need to use. But the possibility of importing full-length major titles directly onto an iOS device opens up instantaneous gameplay that would not have been possible before. Imagine downloading the next Assassin's Creed title directly to your iPad?
5. Everything in one device. Consoles are increasingly adapting to the mobile market, with systems such as the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 sporting popular apps such as Netflix, Hulu and more. If the iPad were to ever prevail as a prominent gaming platform, users would have an entire iTunes market, Internet service, phone-calling capabilities, and more attached to their video game source.
It is important to acknowledge that some of these possibilities are very grandiose visions. The amount of memory and speedy processors required to run such hefty gaming titles along with other apps and services would be a difficult feat. Not to mention the toll it would take on battery life. Players aren't parting with their PlayStations anytime soon, but it's interesting to ponder the possibilities of an iOS primary gaming platform.
Lisa Eadicicco is a reporter covering mobile technology and video games for The International Business Times. Lisa joined the editorial team at IBT in January 2012, and has...