Nintendo Mario 001

Nintendo’s next-generation console codenamed NX, which the company is currently developing, is going to use Android if a report Monday by Nikkei, one of Japan’s largest newspapers, is anything to go by.

According to one insider who spoke with Nikkei, the Nintendo NX will supposedly be built around the Android OS, which should help “speed up getting all game developers on board.”

It would also mean that development could be expanded to smartphones, tablets and other devices, this person added.

“The Nikkei article explains that the apparent reason for this move is the Wii U is not compatible with other game machines,” Kotaku explains.

“So it’s hard for developers to make back money on a title’s development costs when they have to create it specifically for one console,” reads the article. “They can’t easily do a multi-platform release like they could on Xbox One, PS4 and PC.”

Kotaku’s reasoning has its merits. If true, it’s a smart move on Nintendo’s part.

That being said, I’m not entirely convinced that it will work out for them. Exhibit A: the Ouya console, which is also based on Android and hasn’t gained much traction.

If Nintendo makes a forked version of Android to power the NX, it’s fairly safe to assume that they will remove Google Play services in favor of their own digital game store, media store and other company-branded services.

Applying the latest Android version to a forked Android build is anything but easy, as Amazon’s Fire Phone and Fire Tablet have proven. Besides, I think dedicated game consoles—as we know them today—are on their way out.

Earlier this year, the Japanese gaming giant promised to deliver its first batch of smartphone games later this year.

“As proof that Nintendo maintains strong enthusiasm for the dedicated game system business”, Nintendo boss Satoru Iwata said at a press conference in mid-March, “let me confirm that Nintendo is currently developing a dedicated game platform with a brand new concept under the development codename ‘NX’.”

It doesn’t take a die-hard gaming fan to realize that gaming on mobile devices such as smartphones, tablets and phablets has pretty much taken over the vast majority of casual and mainstream gaming crowd.

I mean, when was the last time you bought a dedicated console?

I recently sold my PlayStation 3 as it’s been collecting dust under my telly for the past three years. At first, I wanted to upgrade to a PlayStation 4 or Xbox One but then changed my mind and decided to wait until Apple refreshes its set-top box with a more powerful hardware and an app store for apps and games.

Source: Nikkei (Google Translate) via Kotaku

  • Rowan09

    I don’t believe this is a good idea for Nintendo because they’ll now be competing with stream TV boxes. If people bought this system Nintendo would have to worry about piracy on a larger scale since it would be using (assuming) APK’s. I think this is troubling news for Nintendo trying to find its way back to the top.

  • Chris Tangler

    if this is true, then they might as well close up shop now because that’s where they’re going if this becomes reality

  • techfreak23

    It’s sad coming to the realization that console gaming will one day be dead. I’ll always have the fond memories of playing for hours on my PS2 then my PS3. You can’t get quite the same experience on these smartphone games. They are just little time killers when you’re on the bus or train. Gone will be the days of great story lines and amazing franchises.

    • TechToch

      there is a ps2 emulator for Android Lol

      • techfreak23

        Still not the same… smh

  • iPhoneWINS

    more fail by nintendo

  • iPodDroid

    Keyword: Rumor It’s not like they’re actually going to use Android. Until this is actually confirmed, I’m not taking it seriously unlike some of you guys.

  • Dan

    Rumors, that’s all it is.

    Also comparing the Ouya to this is ludicrous, that thing was DOA. Under-powered and did not have Nintendo’s roster.

    The OS does not matter, it’s the exclusives that do.

    • Kurt

      Exactly what I thought.

    • Rowan09

      Of course the OS matters, if that’s the case why would they be rumored to switch? They have the same exclusives from the past and that won’t change anytime soon.

      • Dan

        What I was saying what’s related to what the ‘author’ was saying, comparing nintendo to ouya and predicting their demise. Nintendo changing their OS will not affect their quality gaming. This article is a waste of space, a sad attempt to get people riled up about android…

      • Rowan09

        I read the article before it was on this site, but whether it’s trying to accomplish people getting riled up doesn’t mean it’s a smart move. Does Nintendo believe the problem with the Wii U is due to smartphones and tablets? No they forgot about their core audience. I said it about them with the Wii that it was very successful based on the pricing point (compared to PS3 and Xbox 360) and they focused on their audience which is kids and families. With the Wii U they are trying to gain hard core gamers and in return (my opinion) forgot about who made them sell 100+ million Wii’s. Consoles usually are sold at a lost and content and accessories helps to recover that money, but if they are going to use Android OS (forked or not), it’s going to be very soon people will root the OS and just download the games free. Piracy in my opinion would be their biggest problem, especially when I don’t really see what changing to Android would fix for them. Time will tell because they usually release and dud and then a successful system after (after the 64, Game cube was a big failure).

      • Dan

        I agree with you (somewhat, since I bought the Wii U and love it for the exclusives, Mario, DK etc). I just meant that it was dumb to compare Nintendo to Ouya. The OS does not determine the direction of the company. Only time will tell.

      • Rowan09

        Got you

    • Jamessmooth

      Yup, I thought the same.

  • U Kn0w What 1t 1s

    Get a PS4!!