Why an Apple console would be a disaster

The latest "HOT APPLE RUMOUR" in the blog-o-verse is that the fashionable computer giant might be planning to enter the gaming world to compete with Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo.

It seems the whole world is telling Apple it needs to make a games machine right now, so, rather grudgingly, it's gone and registered a bunch of patents just in case it decides to half-heartedly enter the gaming arena at some point in the future.

It wouldn't work, no matter how hard Apple tries.

Nintendo's DS is dominating the portable gaming scene, and Sony's PSP has the multimedia portable side (ie, the movie piracy area) tied up as well. The in-home world is a Microsoft/Sony/Nintendo bloodbath of pain and financial misery for all involved, while casual games are taken care of by the dumb offerings churned out for our mobile phones. And Facebook plug-ins.

So what's left for Apple to take? Nothing. If it was to launch a standalone games machine, Apple would be flattened by the pros in a matter of months, currently fashionable brand status or not.

A sleek Apple handheld gaming machine is a fantasy product we'd clearly all love to own and play with, but Apple isn't Nintendo. It's not even Sony. It would have nothing new to offer to gamers, except the chance to shovel yet more money Apple's way via iTunes for more remakes of Sudoku and Frogger.

[Note: Steve Jobs' first job fresh out of college was at Atari. He's had an irrational hatred of computer gaming ever since.]

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