Steve Jobs creative over iPod figures

The fruity peddler of broken dreams Steve Jobs has been accused by a leading financial rag of being “fast and loose” with his sales figures.

Fortune magazine had a look at some of the statements Jobs has been making lately which have been faithfully reported by his tame press.

Jobs claimed that he made the number one portable game player in the world.

For some reason that statement slipped past hacks who should have asked, “more than Sony and Nintendo?”. They didn’t of course, they believed him and wrote it down.

By January Nintendo had sold 125 million DS systems and Sony had sold 62 million PSPs. Jobs said that Apple has sold some 120 million iOS devices. This includes the iPod touch, but tens of millions of iPhones and iPads as well.

If he means just the last quarter then he would have to beat 3.15 million from Nintendo and 1.2 million PSP units from Sony. So how much did Steve manage to flog, then? Apple won’t say because that is commercially secret information and it doesn’t want to make Steve look a tit.

Analysts are siding with Steve. Forbes Oliver Chan suggests said that Apple sold more than 4.35 million iPod Touches last quarter. Piper Jaffray’s Gene Munster flogged 6.8 million last quarter and could sell 7.2 million in the quarter that ends this month.

But what Fortune appears to have forgotten is: since when the iPod been considered a portable games machine in the first place? While the iPod Touch has the same abilities as an iPhone, a Nintendo DS it ain’t.

And neither are the games available for the iPod Touch anything like the games for a DS.

Neither are all the iOS units going to be used for gaming – a lot of them are going to be playing music.

It’s like comparing Zynga’s Farmville to Planescape: Torment.

Anyway, since Steve made his comment it is fairly clear he did not mean it in that way either, although it is clear that was what he said.

The Unoffical Apple Weblog has been saying that Steve actually meant in the number of games not in the number of machines.

Given that apps like iFart are being considered “games” in this statistic we can safely say we are having to deal with the Jobsian Reality Distortion Field and can forget all about it. Just because you have lots of people making lightweight games does not mean that you make the largest number of consoles.

What is perhaps more alarming is that hacks write down what Steve says and treat it as if it was really written on iTablets of stone. While the idiot US hacks who get invited to give him standing ovations at his press conferences are not doing what they are paid to do, users get bewildered by the spin that comes out of Cappuccino.