Gizmondo – LBS games first steps

gizmondo's regent street shop

Happen to be passing the Gizmondo flagship store on Regent Street on Friday and poped in. Gizmondo are a UK based company and are trying to establish a handheld games platform similar at first glance to the PSP or Nintendo DS.

What makes the Gizmondo interesting is that is that it is a network device with an GPRS modem and is location aware with a in-build GPS receiver. These are not just add-ons, Gizmondo seem to be serious about delivering location based games, their parent company in the US Tiger telematics has a solid telematics backgound developing vehicle tracking solutions, and a game soon to be released “colors” is a street gang games played in a virtual model of the street you are actually in !

play in the street

Gizmondo are also developing more familar LBS like applications mapping, geo-fence creation etc to exploit a powerful device, under the hood Gizmondo runs Windows CE, and the backend is powered by MapInfo technology similar to that employed by vodafone.

This could be a interesting new market for Geodata taking its first steps, but as Gizmondo must be aware “content is king” and they need to get some outstanding games behind them to compete in a established market dominated by others. The trick may be to extend the market really making the most of the GPS and WAN capability of the device, the competition may actually be the next generation of smartphones rather than current games platforms. The Gizmondo is available now in the UK and will reach the US in August.

Whatever… I think I need to get one to try it out – Question do I expense a games device ?

Written and submitted from the garden on a warm evening, using my home 802.11 network.

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