Yesterday SGN launched a free iPhone game called iGolf. The new application enables users to take advantage of the accelerometer to hit the ball in a fashion similar to the Nintendo Wii. This move highlights SGN’s desire to move beyond social networks and take advantage of all the new platforms. When I spoke with Shervin Pishevar, CEO of SGN at f8 earlier this summer, he suggested that they were actively considering launching new iPhone applications.
It appears that the company has decided to proceed with new platforms and also a broader strategy as they acquire more wide reaching applications like (fluff)Friends. When it comes down to it, iPhone applications can be just as social as social platform applications so it makes sense that the iPhone is included in SGN’s strategy.
Personally, I found this game to be one of the more entertaining iPhone games even though it’s extremely simple. I could see an upgradable version in which you can purchase levels and actually play on a course rather than just hit the driving range. I’ll be interested to see if SGN decides to focus more on the iPhone instead of just social platforms.
This move also emphasizes how mobile platforms and social platforms are competing for developer resources. Larger companies will be able to play in both areas but smaller development teams have been stretched to the limits and now need to choose one or the other. Honestly, any company involved in social gaming needs to be expanding on to mobile platforms. That’s because mobile is inherently social.