Spector: console hardware is “frozen” while mobile & tablet continue to evolve

Monday, 8th April 2013 14:37 GMT By Dave Cook

Veteran developer Warren Spector has suggested in a new column that next-gen home consoles will face competition from the home entertainment space, and that console tech is stuck in a frozen rut, while mobile and tablet devices continue to evolve.

In his latest column over at GI,biz, Spector was asked if Wii U, PS4 and Xbox 720 would indeed surpass the success of their respective predecessors.

He replied, “Prediction is a fool’s game, so I’ll give you a qualified ‘maybe.’ It seems likely that success will come less than usual in the pure gaming space and more in the home entertainment space.

“And there, the consoles are going to be up against some stiff competition. But it seems likely that the multi-purposeness (is that a word?) of the consoles will be enough of a differentiating feature to keep consoles going for a while, at least.

“The biggest risk associated with consoles, at least to me, is that they’re frozen, hardware-wise, while mobile platforms – phones and tablets – will continue to get more and more powerful.

“I mean, where do you think the iPad or Kindle Fire or Surface or whatever will be in 3 years? 5 years? It’s crazy to think about. And the consoles will still be right where they were in 2013 or whenever they come to market. That’d be a little scary to me if I were a console manufacturer.”

What do you make of Spector’s perspective? Do long console dev cycles mean that they will be stuck in their ways for the entire generation while mobiles and tablets change over time? Will this even matter? Share your thoughts with us below.

Thanks Nintendo Life.



  1. TimX93

    Spector seems to be “frozen in time” himself … Micky Epic 2 was kind of a disaster, I have no trust in him as a game designer anymore, tbh. Anyway, to add something on topic: I wonder what he really wants the manufacturers to do. Release an improved console every year? PS4 in 2013, PS4S in 2014 which runs any PS4 game but not the other way round?!

    #1 2 years ago
  2. hives

    So I guess next game from Spector will be iOS title ;)

    Seriously, I DO NOT care about tech in mobiles. I just don’t care and I don’t believe I’m the only one who knows that iPhone/Android gaming will never be the same experience as playing action game on console or multiplayer shooter on PC.

    So cool, mobile & tablets will be powerful. Wow. More than consoles? Wow. It may happen. But will it change the fact that most of games for these platforms will be made with touch screen in mind…?

    #2 2 years ago
  3. The_Red

    Reading his comment, it’s actually not about innovation or something. He’s just saying that a console will remain with same hardware for 5 years while tablets will be getting revisions and upgraded hardware every year.

    By his logic though, PCs should be the best place because the hardware upgrades are more regular than even smartphones.

    #3 2 years ago
  4. OlderGamer

    I agree with him. I could give you a lot of reasons why, but no one cares. Simply put: I think he is right.

    #4 2 years ago
  5. Richenbaum

    Heh. Well sure he’s “right”, because iphones and the like expect you to not just upgrade, but completely replace your hardware every year or so, so sure technically the hardware and games are “evolving” more often than a static home console. but…so what? Hey great if you buy every iphone and ipad model that came out during this last console phase you’ve spent more than it costs to buy multiple gaming pcs and ended up with something that can at best play the lowest-end games of an about to be outdated console generation. Yeehaw.

    #5 2 years ago

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