Last week we reported on rumblings that GameStop was going to get into the iOS device buying and selling business. We also briefly discussed this on our last podcast, and the TouchArcade hive mind thinks it makes sense, as currently GameStop is a company with a business model based entirely around physical media that's facing the cold hard reality of a physical media-free future thanks to devices like the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. Without some kind of strategy, GameStop could potentially be the next Blockbuster Video, with a business made totally obsolete by advancements in convenience technology.

According to Kotaku, taking iOS devices on trade in isn't the only thing GameStop has up its sleeves. Apparently, they're rolling their own touch-based hardware platform… This, oddly enough, doesn't seem that far fetched either. There are a bazillion Android OEM's out there desperately trying to sell their various reference designs with hopes that they catch on in some meaningful way. And GameStop needs to figure out what it's going to do in the new frontier of app gaming as the bread and butter of their business is taking a game on trade-in for $6 and re-selling it for $60-- Something you can't do with virtual goods.

From the looks of it, GameStop will likely be taking an existing Android device (I'm guessing something based on the Tegra family) and branding it as a "GameStop certified gaming platform." This would potentially also allow them to run their own proprietary Android storefront, that they'd have complete control over, and could then sell virtual goods in stores via downloads codes quickly and easily. (Assuming this catches on, of course.)

What will be interesting to see is if GameStop attempts to weasel in some kind of wacky trade-in mechanic into their store, or what else they could possibly have in mind to make them think that something like this would take off in any meaningful way. Just branding something a "GameStop certified gaming platform" doesn't change the fact that Android's gaming library is largely filled with old ad-laden ports of iOS titles, and if you're standing in a GameStop, I'm not sure why you'd choose a GameStop tablet with Shrek Kart over an iPad with… everything else. Unless of course, the way GameStop is going to choose to compete is on price point, which hasn't exactly worked out for any Android tablet save the HP TouchPad which was liquidated at a massive loss.

[via Kotaku]

  • SMP

    Hmmmmmmmmmmm. I dont know what else to type.

  • Sanuku

    GameStop is for me Dead since they did remove the OnLive Codes for Deus Ex - Human Revolution out of the Game Box "without" telling that their Customers.

    I know that it`s not the fault of all the small Shop Workers that work in the Stores but of their Management but still - Never again in my hole Life i will take or do anything that has something to do with them.

    Many seem to simple doesn`t care about that but i do and i don`t see a reason to step down from my high horse and say that that behavior was all Fine and we all should thank GameStop for that.If you every buy from them or from their Plattform ask yourself if you wana give someone like this your money that literally treat you like a piece of S**t.

  • Mike

    So now we will have another player in the portable video game realm? No wonder Nintendo is scared. id be scared too with all this competition and esp from one of ur main retailers. Like it or not tablets are the next battleground in gaming not dedicated handhelds.

  • Proto13

    I agree mike, and while I love Nintendo, the majority of the games that are downloadable on their handhelds are pure crap with a high price tag. I can find games on my ipod touch that are more fun to play, better looking and a lot cheaper than those offered on the 3ds or DSi stores.

  • Guest

    Once again Eli's talking out of his again about Android. Take a look at the market you moron beforre making more retarded comments.

  • Ecco6t9

    I'm confused, one week this site is praising $2 iOS/Android games now it seems they are praising $30 DS games?

    • MrFouSix

      Are we reading the same article?!
      I guess people see what they want sometimes and not whats being said at all

  • Bobby

    GameStop is just trying to figure out how to adapt to the new world order of downloadable games. Paid downloads are a serious threat to their business model because they aren't bought in a physical store, they're cheap, and most importantly they can't be resold used. 

    Sure most of the games that are sold downloadable are not $30-60 AAA titles, but publishers are experimenting with downloadable sales of AAA titles on, for example, PSN. 

    Unlike most of the people here apparently, I don't hate GameStop. I love used video game / book / music shopping; it's always fun to find something that's been out of print for years still on the shelf (and my tastes tend toward retro, especially as I get older). 

    I watched online music destroy the CD Warehouse ecosystem. I was sad at first, but I buy a lot of my music online now too. Within the next 5 years GameStop may feel the same crunch. I used to buy all my games at GameStop (used) but lately I've been mostly buying downloadable games from the App Store, Steam, and PSN. 

    Plus downloadable gaming, as it turns out, is a retro gamer's dream, with more choices than I ever imagined I would have! 

    • Will Buckingham

      If GameStop was actually the retro used game dealer you make them out to be, it might not be so bad, but they're not.  They're a pawn shop that charges $5 less for used versions of new games that they bought back for pitiful amounts.  You're lucky if you get $20 back for a $60 game that came out three weeks ago, and they turn around and resell it for $55.  It encourages early trade-in of new games to get back the most money,
      and as a result, they turn around and sell less new copies that actually
      support the studios.  And worse still is that if your game isn't Halo, they'll likely only buy 2 or 3 new copies to sell in the shop on release.  They're a leech on the gaming industry that should have died out years ago, but apparently people are too stupid to stop supporting them, even after countless stories about the damage their model of trade-in system causes to the studios actually making the games.

      The latest DeusEx coupon issue is just a final nail in the coffin with these people.  I wouldn't touch this tablet with a ten foot stick out of principle, even if it somehow does turn out to be worthwhile.

  • CyberSlick50

    the HP TouchPad was a WebOS device. last sentence seems to misplace this fact. still a valid point.

  • TheTheory

    That kid made $7.50 on 3 games? That's a King's Ransom from GS.

  • Gee Lampa

    Well, the gave me $100 trade for a 3 year-old, 16gb iPhone 3G.

    That's a pretty good chunk.

  • yanhua wu