Apple has announced that it is launching video games for its popular iPod portable music and video player, downloadable directly from the iTunes Store, and including titles such as Tetris
According to the company, the iTunes Store now also offers
$4.99 downloads of popular video games for fifth generation iPods, including Tetris, Mahjong
and Mini Golf
from Electronic Arts, Pac-Man
from Namco Networks, Cubis 2
from FreshGames, Bejeweled
from PopCap, and Texas Hold'em
from Apple itself.
Alongside this, Apple introduced the latest iteration of the iPod, which is available in a 30GB model for $249 and an 80GB model, which holds up to 20,000 songs or 100 hours of video, for $349. It also revealed new versions of the iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle.
By moving into the casual downloadable game space, Apple is competing both peripherally with handhelds such as the Nintendo Game Boy Advance and DS (although the iPod's controls may not be as naturally suited to gaming as specific handheld devices).
However, this move means that it is more precisely competing with Microsoft's recently announced
Zune handhelds, which will twin music and video playing with some possible game functionality in a similar manner to the iPod.