Nintendo Game Boy Case Patent Turns Smartphones Into Portable Consoles
Nintendo is riding a wave of nostalgic gaming right now, and that wave is bringing in the money. The Nintendo Switch continues to sell well, and Nintendo's small, retro consoles like the NES Classic and SNES Classic are very popular with gamers. However, the company is underrepresented in the smartphone arena. While there are a few Nintendo games on the Android and iOS platforms, it looks like more may be coming. Nintendo has filed a patent application for a Game Boy Casing for touchscreen devices, and what use is a Game Boy case without Game Boy games?
The case appears to be sized for a smartphone, and when closed, it has a vertical style window for the screen, a D-pad, and buttons on the outside like the Game Boy offered back in the day. The front cover buttons have a conductive sheet on the inside so that the touchscreen can sense their input. That suggests these buttons don’t need Bluetooth to connect, helping to extend battery life. The case's front screen opening also leaves the speaker and camera uncovered, so they are usable with the case installed.
Open the case up, and there are more controls on the inside. The control arrangement on the inside of the case looks rather like a controller from Nintendo consoles of yesterday. The patent app does note that the cover might be used with devices that lack telephone capability, in other words, tablets or perhaps the Switch. While the case itself would be cool for retro gaming fans, another bit of good news is that this patent should mean Game Boy games are on the mobile roadmap for Nintendo.
Nintendo continues its winning streak financially, as a report that surfaced in early August that claimed that the NES Classic was dominating console sales moving significantly more units than the PS4 and Xbox One. However, that doesn’t mean that Nintendo is making more money, the revenue crown went to Sony with its PS4 making more money than other consoles so far this year.