Apple hiring away PR execs from Nintendo, Activision - rumor

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
Reports have emerged that Apple has poached two PR executives from gaming giants Nintendo and Activision in a continued push to establish iOS as a dominant gaming platform.



A report from MCV claims that former Nintendo UK head of communications Robert Saunders will leave his position at the end of April for a "newly created role at Apple."



Though the report admits that Saunders, and Apple, have yet to confirm the news, he will reportedly be focused on PR for iPad, iPod and iPhone apps.



Saunders spent seven years at Nintendo, during which time he helped successfully launch the Wii console and DS handheld.



In addition to Saunders, MCV> reports that Apple has also successfully poached PR director Nick Grange from Activision's European division. According to the report, Grange's role, which is also yet to be officially confirmed, will focus on iPad hardware while at Apple.



As gaming on Apple's iOS platform has taken off, Apple has turned to gaming industry veterans for help in tackling the industry's incumbents.



In 2009, Apple posted a job listing for "passionate gamer" with AAA gaming development experience. The position was similar to one filled by 'game guru' Graeme Devine, who worked as a member of Apple's iPhone Game Technologies group for a year before leaving in December 2010 to design his own games for Apple's platforms.



Last year, Apple hired former IGN editor Matt Casamassina as global editorial games manager for the App Store.



Apple's strategy appears to be paying off. According to a December 2010 report by Interpret, smartphone gaming has risen to 43.8 percent of the mobile gaming market, while the number of games played on the Nintendo DS and Sony PSP has fallen by 13 percent.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 29
    Why PR executives?
  • Reply 2 of 29
    jensonbjensonb Posts: 528member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by BronxRed View Post


    Why PR executives?



    Evangelism I assume.
  • Reply 3 of 29
    anyone who can get people to buy something called the "wii" has got to be doing something right.



    anyway... can we get games on tv, please?
  • Reply 4 of 29
    nvidia2008nvidia2008 Posts: 9,262member
    Just finished Dead Space 2. Pretty epic... Movies are nothing compared to some video games now in terms of plot, scope, originality, etc. I experienced edginess, one or two nightmares as well playing through it. Longer than the first Dead Space. While the gameplay is not as tight as the first, Dead Space 2 is as ambitious as any console title. Certainly graphic and disturbing in ways movies no longer are.



    Bring on the Apple console... Till then I'll hang on to my PC gaming for as long as I can.



    Altman be praised!
  • Reply 5 of 29
    onhkaonhka Posts: 1,025member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    In addition to Saunders, MCV> reports that Apple has also successfully poached PR director Nick Grange from Activision's European division.



    Poaching is illegal. Love to see the evidence that Apple conducted such 'illegal' activity in their hiring of these two men.
  • Reply 6 of 29
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 19,805member
    I swear some of these "rumors" must be invented just to get some of us to accept (and post!) them as fact. Takes one guy to mention a rumor and all of a sudden it's accepted at face value by a whole bunch'a folks, repeated ad nauseum all over the web. AI's a great source for Apple news. The rumor thing? Not so much.



    So at least we know that Apple has apparently hired a guy that used to work for Activision.
  • Reply 7 of 29
    mikemikebmikemikeb Posts: 113member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by OllieWallieWhiskers View Post


    anyway... can we get games on tv, please?



    The primary problem holding back the AppleTV as a gaming platform is a simple one: What do you use for a controller? Sure, the obvious solution would be to use an iPod touch or iPhone, but the AppleTV was designed to be used by someone who had never purchased an Apple device, before. Who'd want to spend $200 or more for a single controller, on top of an initial $100 console? (Sure, there are cheaper iPhones, but those require a long-term contract.) So I'd think Apple would have to create a cheaper controller that's easy to use, and works similarly enough to an iPod touch, that people who brought their own could join in on the action. That's not easy to pull off.



    Second of all, the A4 doesn't officially have enough power to decode 1080p gaming in real time, which is kind of important if you want to go against XBox 360 and PS3. (Wii, sure, but they'll probably go HD in a couple of years.) The A5 might not have enough power, either. It might not be until the A6 before we see the kind of XBox-like graphics and computational power that's needed, and it might take two of them, even then. For that reason, and a couple of others, I suspect that the current AppleTV won't get a refresh until the A6 is available.
  • Reply 8 of 29
    magicjmagicj Posts: 406member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Onhka View Post


    Poaching is illegal. Love to see the evidence that Apple conducted such 'illegal' activity in their hiring of these two men.



    I think he was using the term to mean "Boiled in water".
  • Reply 9 of 29
    eriamjheriamjh Posts: 1,095member
    Ugh. Who would want them?
  • Reply 10 of 29
    nvidia2008nvidia2008 Posts: 9,262member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by magicj View Post


    I think he was using the term to mean "Boiled in water".



  • Reply 11 of 29
    cvaldes1831cvaldes1831 Posts: 1,832member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Eriamjh View Post


    Ugh. Who would want them?



    Apparently Apple, Activision and Nintendo, to name a few.



    And they are probably getting paid more than you and I.
  • Reply 12 of 29
    kibitzerkibitzer Posts: 1,113member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by BronxRed View Post


    Why PR executives?



    Marketing communications executives would be a better description. Then it becomes obvious.
  • Reply 13 of 29
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by BronxRed View Post


    Why PR executives?



    Not so important that they are in PR as it is that they are high level game industry insiders with networks of contacts among, distribution, developers, writers, programming studios, etc, but are not specialized in any technical discipline as to have to unlearn anything to integrate with the Apple culture. Remember Papermaster, he was very smart but too specialized in particular ways of doing things and could not mesh with the sometimes unorthodox methodology that is the Apple way.
  • Reply 14 of 29
    kibitzerkibitzer Posts: 1,113member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by mstone View Post


    Not so important that they are in PR as it is that they are high level game industry insiders with networks of contacts among, distribution, developers, writers, programming studios, etc, but are not specialized in any technical discipline as to have to unlearn anything to integrate with the Apple culture. Remember Papermaster, he was very smart but too specialized in particular ways of doing things and could not mesh with the sometimes unorthodox methodology that is the Apple way.



    In other words - marketing communications.
  • Reply 15 of 29
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Kibitzer View Post


    In other words - marketing communications.



    Whatever... I was not dismissing your post. We were both working on our individual text concurrently. But some Jehovah Witnesses came to the door while I was writing mine so I was delayed several minutes, otherwise my post would have preceded yours.
  • Reply 16 of 29
    jensonbjensonb Posts: 528member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Onhka View Post


    Poaching is illegal. Love to see the evidence that Apple conducted such 'illegal' activity in their hiring of these two men.



    ...No, it's not.
  • Reply 17 of 29
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 19,805member
    Actually poaching IS defined as an illegal activity.
  • Reply 18 of 29
    xsuxsu Posts: 401member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by magicj View Post


    I think he was using the term to mean "Boiled in water".



    Poached executives? Doesn't sound so yummy, but I'm open to taste it.
  • Reply 19 of 29
    eriamjheriamjh Posts: 1,095member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by cvaldes1831 View Post


    Apparently Apple, Activision and Nintendo, to name a few.



    And they are probably getting paid more than you and I.



    Everyone is paid more than I.
  • Reply 20 of 29
    desidesdesides Posts: 80member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    As gaming on Apple's iOS platform has taken off, Apple has turned to gaming industry veterans for help in tackling the industry's incumbents.



    If Apple is serious about this, they should develop their own games. Not only are first party games standard practice in the industry, but Apple already does it in so many other fields.



    Buy at least three developers and give them free reign to make whatever they want. Jonathan Blow would be a good hire. And work more closely with third party developers to get games to perform better on OS X. Assassin?s Creed 2 is an utter performance joke on OS X right now.
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