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Investors pushing Nintendo to support Apple's iPhone, iPad

post #1 of 75
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Investors believe Nintendo should bring some of its most popular franchises, like Super Mario, to Apple's iOS platform, as the Japanese company's 3DS portable gaming device struggles against the iPhone.

One fund manager believes Nintendo should abandon its strategy of only releasing titles for its own hardware, and support other platforms, including the iPhone, iPad and Facebook. According to Bloomberg, Masamitsu Ohki, a fund manager at Stats Investment Management Co., believes Nintendo should enter the growing smartphone market, which has proved to be a major player in portable gaming.

The report noted that Nintendo stock jumped after it was revealed a Pokemon title was coming to the iPhone and Android. However, those gains disappeared when Nintendo reaffirmed that it does not plan to support competing hardware.

The success of the iPhone was in part to blame for relatively mediocre sales of the newly launched Nintendo 3DS. Responding to the handheld's slow start, Nintendo announced just four months after it launched that it would slash the device's price by $80.

But Nintendo President Satoru Iwata believes the reason the 3DS had a slow start is a lack of hit titles at launch. He has said his company will not support other platforms, even as Nintendo's stock has hit six-year lows.

Nintendo's primary competitors in the console game market, Microsoft and Sony, have their own smartphones that act as portable game devices. Sony has even launched a PlayStation-branded phone, while Microsoft is hoping to leverage its Xbox-related successes on the company's Windows Phone 7 platform.



While competition in the smartphone space continues to grow, Nintendo is resting on about $10 billion in cash and investments, which some investors reportedly think the Japanese company should make better use of. Tokyo-based Commons Asset Management Inc., for example, believes the company should make acquisitions or increase returns to shareholders.

In addition to a price cut on the 3DS, Nintendo is pinning its hopes on a new traditional console set to launch next year, dubbed the Wii U. The successor to the popular Wii console will feature a 6-inch touchscreen controller that has drawn comparisons to Apple's iPad.
post #2 of 75
". . . Apple should abandon" or " Nintendo should abandon"?
post #3 of 75
Apple can buy Nintendo but should it?

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post #4 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

One fund manager believes Apple should abandon its strategy of only releasing titles for its own hardware, and support other platforms, including the iPhone, iPad . . .

!!!???
post #5 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by DESuserIGN View Post

!!!???

I was about to post the same thing. I would LOVE Apple to stop supporting it's own hardware, and spreading the love to other platforms!
post #6 of 75
I really have to ask...
Exactly WHO would want a 'Playstation Phone' or 'Wii Phone'?

Want to point me to the massive number of parents who are going to sign up little Timmy for a 2 year phone contract in order to let him play crappy games?

Hard core gamers? Are they that truly addicted to mobile gaming that they'll put their important communications needs into the hands of Nintendo?

Any adult? Seriously a grown up pulling out their Wii phone at a meeting, or to impress a date?

I don't see the market for a phone by a game company.
post #7 of 75
I can see nintendo releasing a new ip or two on the iPhone/ipod touch that caters directly to having no buttons BUT I do not see mario or any of those ups on the systems because of the lack of buttons.

IF the next iPhone has a directional pad at least then i can see it but only new ups i can see.
post #8 of 75
Nintendo is just like Apple: it builds hardware and software, whilst innovating within its own eco-system rather than building for multiple platforms.

So, I don't see them building for iOS anytime soon - which is a shame.
post #9 of 75
If *investors* (fund managers and individual investors alike) believe they are so wise in product management and strategic planning for a tech company, why don't quit their day job and put their money where their mouths are? What credibility do they think they have when they start *recommending* product strategies?
post #10 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by majortom1981 View Post

I can see nintendo releasing a new ip or two on the iPhone/ipod touch that caters directly to having no buttons BUT I do not see mario or any of those ups on the systems because of the lack of buttons.

IF the next iPhone has a directional pad at least then i can see it but only new ups i can see.

Nintendo Handheld games are too button oriented. They could release an accessory and optional screen buttons I guess.

Seems like a good idea to refocus on smartphones to me. Integrated devices are the future. The iPod is also slowly going away. They could still make their own devices for the disappearing demographic that wants that. I can think of other companies that create dedicated hardware and games: Sega, Atari, etc... It is inevitable that Nintendo's hardware strategy will eventually fail.
post #11 of 75
the way I see it, this is terrible advice. Nintendo is at heart a hardware company -- they make game consoles. If they started porting their most valuable property to other consoles, it would be the end of their own, particularly when Apple has such a huge head start.

Much as I would love to play Super Mario on my phone, this would be an incredibly bad move for Nintendo...

unless they're ready to throw in the towel and become a game design company and start competing against EA and all the other game writers.
post #12 of 75
They'd unlock a lot of value if they did this. Nintendo has to realize that they are addressing only about 10-20% of the gaming market with their current position. Pretty stupid. That's the kind of thing that gets CEOs fired.
post #13 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by iCarbon View Post

the way I see it, this is terrible advice. Nintendo is at heart a hardware company -- they make game consoles.

I would argue quite the opposite. Nintendo is primarily a software company. Their hardware is just a means of selling their software, not the other way around.

For example, look at the top 10 selling games on the Wii. 9 of them are from Nintendo and just one (the 10th!) is from another company.

It's clear that people buy Nintendo hardware primarily to play Nintendo games.

I think Nintendo would be a fantastic purchase for someone like Apple. If they started pumping out games targeted toward iOS and an Apple console it would be a very very big deal.
post #14 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by cameronj View Post

They'd unlock a lot of value if they did this. Nintendo has to realize that they are addressing only about 10-20% of the gaming market with their current position. Pretty stupid. That's the kind of thing that gets CEOs fired.

Except people who use dedicated games machines play a lot more games (and spend a lot more money on gaming) than the average person. Nintendo might not be addressing the majority of gamers but they are addressing the most valuable gamers.

People buy Nintendo hardware because of Mario and other Nintendo games. By releasing their exclusive titles on other platforms they would be helping to kill their own platforms which would do far more damage to Nintendo's profits than they could hope to gain from releasing an iOS titles.
post #15 of 75
Having the Zelda on my iPhone would be legendary!!

If Nintendo was willing to sell, Apple would be foolish not to scoop the IP. Theres an immense amount of built-in following/fanbase that would surely follow their beloved characters wherever they go. Also, it's all proprietary and has a history of being held in a garden; perfect fit for Apple.

I wonder how sick an Apple-branded nintendo+pixar game would be?
post #16 of 75
Nintendo is identical to Apple.

They make great software to sell their custom hardware.

The best gaming franchises are Nintendo's, and they're (for the most part) created by one man, Shigeru Miyamoto (宮本 茂). Just like Steve and Apple.

Nintendo would do astonishingly well if they created iOS versions of all of their past games, much less created new ones for Apple hardware.

But they won't. They'll stick to their guns until bankruptcy and intellectual property divvying-up between remaining companies.

And I think that's what makes them just like Apple.

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post #17 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by esummers View Post

I can think of other companies that create dedicated hardware and games: Sega, Atari, etc... It is inevitable that Nintendo's hardware strategy will eventually fail.

But neither Sega or Atari has been particularly successful outside of the hardware business either.
post #18 of 75
As others have said, Nintendo is a hardware company. Saying they should make games for other platform is akin to saying Apple should license OS X to other manufacturers. Not gonna happen.
The 3DS is off to a disappointing start and probably won't ever be as popular as the DS was, but with the price cut and with better games approaching, I think it'll gain some sales. Nintendo probably realized that people aren't up for buying expensive devices without decent games ready at launch anymore.
post #19 of 75
Nintendo probably won't be porting any of their games over to iOS anytime soon, but they should. It would open up their games to many million more new customers, and I personally think that it would be great, because I happen to like some of the older Nintendo titles that I remember playing. Nintendo could make their own bluetooth controller for iOS if they wanted and it, combined with all of the great Nintendo titles, this would definitely sell a ton.

iOS devices have been eating a chunk out of mobile game devices sales and the last Nintendo handheld hasn't been doing too great, and it's also been the victim of a recent heavy price drop. Times are not great for Nintendo, at the moment.

The landscape is changing and mobile game devices are being threatened by the likes of iPhones, iPod Touches and iPads.

Sooner or later, hopefully Nintendo will cave in, set aside their pride for a moment, and announce that Mario is coming to iOS. It would be huge!
post #20 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by iCarbon View Post

the way I see it, this is terrible advice. Nintendo is at heart a hardware company -- they make game consoles. If they started porting their most valuable property to other consoles, it would be the end of their own, particularly when Apple has such a huge head start

Eh? Nintendo a hardware company? Maybe in the past, when they still made hardware that mattered, like the NES and SNES, and to a lesser degree the N64, but after that, Nintendo has always been trailing in hardware, and it sure doesn't seem like that's going to change anytime. What has made Nintendo are their big franchises, supported by great software. Mario, Zelda, Metroid, Pokemon, etc.

As much as I hate to say it, I think Nintendo *is* going the way of Sega, and will have to transform into a multi-platform software company.
post #21 of 75
Makes sense to me. There is very little profit selling the base hardware platform (IE...XBOX, Playstation, etc). Most money is made selling the software. This profit model is true in just about any industry where an initial piece of hardware (Cell Phone, Printer) is really the instrument used to secure future sales (monthly contracts, print cartridges).

If I was Best Buy, I would be worried. Soon, all gaming consoles and platforms will be going to online sales and distribution.
post #22 of 75
its about growth and revenue

they just announced a failing "3d" platform

their assests are now in their games, spread them to more "players"
this has been discussed before by many,
move to the true mobile platform--ios
nintendo ds francise is dying or dead

why buy another wii, get a used one and buy an ipad or touch that's the future
for me i won't buy those games anymore, since its easy to lose, and its old tech.
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post #23 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by iCarbon View Post

the way I see it, this is terrible advice. Nintendo is at heart a hardware company -- they make game consoles. If they started porting their most valuable property to other consoles, it would be the end of their own, particularly when Apple has such a huge head start.

Nah, their margins on the hardware is small, in some cases barely over the break-even point. They make far more money from software sales and licensing. For each hardware device, approximately 10 games are sold over the lifetime of the device.

Lifetime Wii hardware sales has been 86 million units. Lifetime Wii software title sales has been 716 million units (source: Nintendo 2011 Annual Report, available at www.nintendo.co.jp/ir).
post #24 of 75
Maybe if Nintendo can sell an iPhone (or iPod) add-on that would wrap the device in a case that featured real, external buttons. I really don't like games where I have to press the touch screen.....it blocks my view of the game.
post #25 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by Orlando View Post

Except people who use dedicated games machines play a lot more games (and spend a lot more money on gaming) than the average person. Nintendo might not be addressing the majority of gamers but they are addressing the most valuable gamers ...

This is really just wishful thinking. I don't see how you have any facts to support these assertions.

It's true that moving their games to iOS would ultimately destroy their hardware business, but any intelligent analysis of the market would indicate that this will happen fairly soon anyway. They need to get pro-active before they lose it all. If they don't start making some money, the company will end up being sold or go down in flames and then be sold.

Then the new buyers will just look at the assets and say "Hey, we should port all this old stuff to iOS and get the most money we can out of the purchase." So it's pretty much going to happen anyway.
post #26 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by noexpectations View Post

Maybe if Nintendo can sell an iPhone (or iPod) add-on that would wrap the device in a case that featured real, external buttons. I really don't like games where I have to press the touch screen.....it blocks my view of the game.

Cases like this already exist. They are marginally popular with small groups of gamers.
post #27 of 75
I don't believe Nintendo should be considering porting their current games to any outside device. They would need to sell 10 or 20 times as many games at the prices iOS users expect to pay to equal their current revenue. iOS users are certainly not going to pay $50 for a game.

However, Nintendo has a large number of titles from its previous platforms that would sell well on iOS. That would seem to be a very lucrative move for them. I would be interested in a Mario 1,2, or 3 game on my iOS device.
post #28 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post

Cases like this already exist. They are marginally popular with small groups of gamers.

The problems with those "cases," however, is that there's only one functional case that I've heard of (iControlpad)... and it requires jailbreaking. If you want to play games requiring precise input (platformers and fighters immediately come to mind), you need well-supported third-party solutions. Unfortunately, iControlpad is anything but well-supported. It's also huge and clumsy looking.

A lightweight Nintendo-created cover/slider for the iPhone with built-in D-pad and buttons would go a long way toward satisfying the admittedly niche market of gamers who want more precise control for many of their games. Of course, such a control mechanism would simply be an added option; touch controls would still work fine and touch games designed from the ground up as such would continue to sell well. Nintendo could output games via the app store that only operate with its controller, so they still make hardware sales. At the same time, they open their games up to an even larger audience.
post #29 of 75
I find it amusing that people predict doom and gloom for Nintendo because of a lackluster debut. It's as bad as the people thinking Apple is doomed whenever something doesn't go as well as expected (I.e. iPhone 4's problems at launch). The Wii is the top selling console and the DS I think is the most successful one Nintendo has ever had, and unlike Sony and Microsoft, they don't sell hardware at a loss.
SEGA failed in consoles because they made a lot of bad decisions and ran out of money. I don't think Nintendo's going broke anytime soon, and I think they know when they need to adapt to a changing market. Don't count them out yet.
post #30 of 75
Nintendo would better off partnering with somebody.

I can see nintendo partnering with Apple on say a new apple tv (with a wii controller, the apple remote software). Nintendo provides the hardware. Apple provides the OS . Nintendo and Apple both use arm chips so i think it would work. Sell it for say $150 split the profit down the middle .

It would sell millions. they would not be able to keep them in stock.

This would not happen because the japanese stock holders would not want to partner with an american company.

Also i just read an article that states this story is blown out of proportion. the person who gave a suggestion said to just release some games for iOS. NOt dump everything for IOs
post #31 of 75
Nintendo hedge their future on the casual gamer and snubbed the hardcore gamer. They didn't figure on Apple and Android outright owning casual gaming market like they did.

Nintendo has a tough road ahead. I personally love their products, but I fear they will become another Sega. Which sucks because Sega use to make awesome titles, but now most of their stuff just plain sucks (probably because they write to so many platforms)...
post #32 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by GQB View Post

I really have to ask...
Want to point me to the massive number of parents who are going to sign up little Timmy for a 2 year phone contract in order to let him play crappy games?

What? Have you heard of the iPod Touch?
post #33 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by majortom1981 View Post

I can see nintendo releasing a new ip or two on the iPhone/ipod touch that caters directly to having no buttons BUT I do not see mario or any of those ups on the systems because of the lack of buttons.

IF the next iPhone has a directional pad at least then i can see it but only new ups i can see.

I disagree about the button issue. Apps like Monster Dash have made it work. Nintendo could also. Either on board or even "The incident" style where there is an option to use the iPad as merely a screen with an iPhone/touch as the controller.

In fact I've been saying for months that Nintendo should release some of their older stuff like the original 2d Super Mario Bros titles for the iPad. They would sell great and it would stop the negative press of folks saying that Nintendo is scared of iOS. And it could be a great gateway to get folks to buy nintendo hardware to get the even cooler 3d games that are only available on the Wii etc.
post #34 of 75
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post #35 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by esummers View Post

Nintendo Handheld games are too button oriented. They could release an accessory and optional screen buttons I guess.

The last two Zelda games on the DS were controlled mainly with a stylus. They'd work fine on an iPhone. Super Mario though, not so much.
post #36 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffhrsn View Post

What? Have you heard of the iPod Touch?

good shot dude

lol



apple should get mario and etc

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post #37 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by Orlando View Post

Except people who use dedicated games machines play a lot more games (and spend a lot more money on gaming) than the average person. Nintendo might not be addressing the majority of gamers but they are addressing the most valuable gamers.

People buy Nintendo hardware because of Mario and other Nintendo games. By releasing their exclusive titles on other platforms they would be helping to kill their own platforms which would do far more damage to Nintendo's profits than they could hope to gain from releasing an iOS titles.

Saying that Nintendo doesn't need to make games for phones, (or make phones itself) because the valuable gaming consumers want dedicated kit is massively short sighted. It would have been like Apple ignoring the smartphone market in 2007 because most people who care about music wanted a dedicated PMP.
post #38 of 75
It would be nice to see Nintendo games in the App Store, but it won't happen until Nintendo is on the cusp of bankruptcy.

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post #39 of 75
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Originally Posted by cvaldes1831 View Post

Nah, their margins on the hardware is small, in some cases barely over the break-even point. They make far more money from software sales and licensing. For each hardware device, approximately 10 games are sold over the lifetime of the device.

Lifetime Wii hardware sales has been 86 million units. Lifetime Wii software title sales has been 716 million units (source: Nintendo 2011 Annual Report, available at www.nintendo.co.jp/ir).

Mostly true.

But I think XBox and Playstation divisions sell their hardware at a loss and try to recoup the loss with software. MS and Sony make profits somewhere else in their corporation and can keep losing billions.

Nintendo is about gaming fun and only about gaming fun, and that's all they want to be. Everyone thinks they are stubborn just like Apple for not throwing their software everywhere. And I love it.

I want Nintendo to stick to their guns, because in the end it will make them make good games. Imagine if Nintendo made more money from iOS than their own offerings. They'll get Red Rings of death, buggy games, and not value their core customers.
post #40 of 75
If anybody has ever tried to play games like Madden on the iPad know that most gaming really does need a control stick and buttons. Madden with the PS3 control is great. The iPad, not so good. Even other games like Battlefield Bad Company 2 controlled horribly. Glad I only paid .99 for each or I'd consider them a rip-off. I may be in the minority, but I would rather play great games on dedicated machines than crappy games that are cheap. I also tried Street Fighter IV and ugh, still controls poorly.

Nintendo's first part games are mostly not "casual" games. Mario, Zelda, Metroid, etc are not "casual" games. They tried to re-invent themselves in the casual market with the Wii. It worked well selling consoles, but causal gamers don't buy many games. Hence the part where Wii failed. It failed to capture the hardcore gamers due to the graphics and motion controls.

The Wii U is going back to more traditional controls complimented by motion controls and the secondary screen.

I take it that Sony and Microsoft should just give up the hardware+software market for smartphone games. Since this is an apple-centric site, let's have nothing but iPods and iPads for games. I am sure games like Halo, Gears of War and Uncharted would be great on a system with no control sticks and no buttons.

The iPad/iPod/iPhone are great for causal games like Angry Birds or Cut the Rope but hardcore sports, FPS, TPS, and platformers are better left to systems that cater to them.
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