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Apple Launching a $19.99 Premium Game Section in App Store?

It’s being rumored that Apple will be unveiling a new “premium games section” in the App Store sometime soon. No official date has been announced, but WWDC is being mentioned as a possibility for such an announcement. claims to have sources that have told them about the upcoming “premium” section.

Apple is planning to introduce a premium games section to its App Store where it will sell a range of iPhone games for $19.99, sources tell

However, the initiative will only be open to a restricted number of large publishers, rather than the thousands of smaller developers currently selling their titles on the main App Store.

There are no details on timescale, although Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC), traditionally held in June, may be one likely launch date. However, it could be announced at a separate games-focused event.

Apple has been pushing the iPhone and iPod touch hard as gaming devices. While they have definitely flipped the mobile market on its head, the lack of directional pad and powerful processors make us wonder if the devices will ever be able to compete with the likes of the Nintendo DS and Sony PSP. MacRumors notes that higher priced games are in Apple’s best interest, and they are. But games priced at $19.99 would be a stretch for a non-dedicated gaming device. If Apple embraces accessories like the third-party iControlpad, this would of course be a different situation.

Comments [3]

3 Comments to “Apple Launching a $19.99 Premium Game Section in App Store?”

dave @ January 29th, 2009 at 1:09 pm
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Why just premium games? Why not have a Premium Apps section instead?


Aviv @ January 29th, 2009 at 1:44 pm
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@Dave: Well, there are already applications out there that cost over $20. This would be for expensive and “premium” games… Whatever that means.


Terry Rogers @ February 3rd, 2009 at 5:00 pm
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Hi everyone, I’m a bit late on the chat, it’s not like I was going
any more relevant than anyone else but here is what I think.

I think it’s safe to say that people are slightly narrow minded when
it comes to defining these portable device. Being a “fanboy” or a
“fangirl” is quite a comftarble status unlike simply being rational
about the situation.

First, the iPod Touch and the iPhone are multimedia platform. Often,
the music player is acknowledge has it’s unique feature. The iPod
Touch and iPhone is actually a pretty powerful device (memory, speed
& rendering) that can actually browse the web, run diverse types of
application and support a large array of media files.

These device are now pushing toward their gaming aspect. The Touch
Gen are unconventional for gaming, they are somewhat less technical
and more intuitive (this is the same reason some may never like the
Wii). Because of their nature, a lot of the game released for Apple
devices are crap and of homebrew quality. It was the same for the DS
when it came out, but Nintendo had more experience in blocking trash
from their platform.

It’s safe to say that the Apple Premium Games will push the gaming
aspect of the Touch Gen even beyond their MVP app’s. They have to.
Why? Well this brings me to my second point.

The DS and PSP which are what people call “gaming dedicated devices”
actually have a lot of multimedia potential. Sony and Nintendo are
slowly but convincingly pushing toward multi-functions devices with
new firmware, hardware and services just like Apple. Everyone is
adventuring in to everyones territory. Thats how capitalism works :P
Apple, Sony and Nintendo actions are not really surprising.

I’ll watch how things work out for these guys. Fanslaves, choose your
camp; technical=PSP, hybrid=DS, intuitive=iPod. Has for me, I’m
pretty much versatile.