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Submitted by MattS 1117d ago | opinion piece

Nintendo shake up could mean the end of Nintendo hardware as we know it

Nintendo has announced that it is merging the R&D departments for its handheld and home console hardware divisions. A dry news story on the surface has dramatic between-the-lines ramifications for the company. (3DS, Industry, Nintendo, Wii U)

Alternative Sources
Godchild1020  +   1117d ago
They are doing this to speed up hardware development. From the alternative article.

"The hope is that by merging these two divisions, the company will also be able to speed up its hardware development cycle to better compete with tablets and smartphones."

It looks like we will be seeing Next Gen Hardware from Nintendo more often. They don't plan on leaving the console race and I'm happy they don't plan to leave either.
#1 (Edited 1117d ago ) | Agree(41) | Disagree(3) | Report | Reply
Kingofwiiu  +   1117d ago
Are people litteraly interpreting this as Negative ? It's merely a bit of restructuring in order to speed up development of Hardware like you say....

There will be a Nintendo Home console and a Nintendo Handheld once more in the 9th gen...

Every single penny needs to be saved in order to Run a company that big , good on them.
Persistantthug  +   1117d ago
@Kingofwiiu....Personally, I don't think Nintendo will have another traditional home console
for the 9th generation.
Also, I don't view that as a negative.

I'm envisioning a future handheld sometime in 2015 - 2018 with a video output.

Handhelds is what Nintendo does best, and powerwise, it better fits what they do (cartoony/art driven graphics).

Since some analysts are predicting the eventual demise of home consoles, if you believe this, then this would be putting Nintendo ahead of the eventual curve and trend and would save tons of money, considering console launches cost billions of dollars.
WiigotU  +   1117d ago
@Persistntthug if anything it mens it's the opposite. I think there next handheld and home console will be completely compatible. That means a HD portable that doubles as a tablet come home and it streams a signal effortlesly to the wiiu type of home console.
MikeMyers  +   1117d ago
I don't like the words used in the topic outline. It makes it seem like Nintendo won't be making any hardware. They are just merging divisions.
darthv72  +   1117d ago
i was thinking....
sony might be the first but it could be nintendo that beats them to it.

meaning a system that serves to be both a console when hooked to a tv but also a portable when you take it with you.

sony had the right idea back with the psp go with being able to plug it into a tv and use regular controller or play it on the...go.

We are seeing more and more mobile devices (phones/tablets) that are merging the two ideas so for a dedicated game company like nintendo to 'possibly' be doing the same does not surprise me.

I just thought sony would do it first but then again....they could just do it better.

i know "better" is a subjective term.
mcstorm  +   1117d ago
I agree and well said. I really like what Nintendo are doing at the moment. I was not a big fan of the DS or the Wii. I had them but I just felt compared to the SNES, N64, GameCube (With the Wii) and Gameboy, GBA (for the DS) they were just not as good as what Nintendo offered in the past. I now have a 3ds and WiiU and I am loving them. The WiiU shocked me at how good he console is and its well build and a joy to use to.

Its good to see the Big N making changes as this means we should get a better Big N from now on.
dedicatedtogamers  +   1117d ago
Nintendo launched the 3DS, and then they launched the WiiU with the tablet controller. Nintendo has also been on the forefront of glasses-free 3D.

What does this mean?

I imagine that Nintendo will launch an "all in one" console in the future: a set-top console that plugs into your TV, a tablet controller with a 3D screen that works with the TV (which the WiiU already does) but ALSO can be taken on the go, perhaps even being able to temporarily download full console games into a cache of RAM.
user3915800  +   1117d ago
I doubt it, the main reason you combined divisions are for cutting cost and merging to develop a more directive supervision of outsources. I believe they are trying to get the handheld division to give positive inputs to the home console, cause the Wii-u its a disaster. Let me be clear before ppl start bashing me, the gamepad design sucks. it was created with a grown up in mind. I know cause a 5 year old cant hold that thing for 15 minutes before he drops it and the batteries drain in about 2 hours, depending on the game. To make matters worst, the consoles are just sitting in stores everywhere. With that said, I still enjoy it cause Im a gamer who dont care for design, all I want is to play games that are appealing and big N has plenty.
miyamoto  +   1117d ago
my PSP 3000 is a handheld portable/home console thanks to component cables

but NVidia Project Shield not the PS Vita takes the concept to a whole new level

if ever Nintendo does make a proper handheld portable/home then that will be great for the gamer's & Nintendo's wallets
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G-cis  +   1117d ago
And here we go again
camel_toad  +   1117d ago
Ancient console enemies from a long time ago (Nintendo and Sega) should join forces and create a new console. The Dreamcube...
MiyagiSPG  +   1117d ago
Or the Nintendo Drive :P

Needs to have Nintendo in the name to be a Nintendo console!
DwightOwen  +   1117d ago
Super Genesis?
bozebo  +   1117d ago
Nintendo are like, the only game company who make their profit in hardware (they use their software IP's exclusivity to make people want to buy the hardware). So... no, they are increasing production not reducing it like the article suggests.
#4 (Edited 1117d ago ) | Agree(11) | Disagree(3) | Report | Reply
G20WLY  +   1117d ago
In fact, every Wii U sold is a loss for Nintendo.

It's the impressive attach rate that generates profit for Nintendo, which - when combined with their ability to garner massive sales numbers from a few great games - is what makes it so viable.

With that said - and with my experience in multi-national corporate restructure - make no mistake that their goal, first and foremost, will be cost cutting as a result of job cuts (if they're smart, they'll do this through natural attrition, as it won't make the headlines that way), process-realignment and the like.

Meanwhile, we have to sit by and hope that a happy by-product is more joined up hardware output.

Cross your fingers, wait and see! :)
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bozebo  +   1117d ago
Job cuts doesn't really make sense for them, I think they make pretty much the highest profit per employee of any widely known company, they don't have a big workforce.

Wii-U production costs will drop enough for them to be making a profit well before the generation is over.

They aren't really running out of money, if they can ride out the losses till big titles start selling it should work out fine, but they'll probably be worse off than they were when the generation began.
G20WLY  +   1117d ago
^I agree that production costs should drop and move the console into profit, but it's very difficult to predict how long that will take. I also agree that they're not in a great financial trouble and have every faith in them to come good.

However, I can't let your first paragraph go unanswered, simply as I'm close to this type of thing and your claim came across more hopeful (aren't we all?!) than factual.

Employees very often make up the largest cost factor for a company and so is usually the first targeted when cost reduction/restructure comes around.

Nintendo is not of particular note with regards to profit per employee; it doesn't even make the top 25 list. Interestingly, some companies (of note to our community) that perform very well (all top 5) are Google, Apple and Microsoft, all of which generates more than $250k per employee! Nintendo's equivalent statistic was better than it is now 4-5 years ago, in fairness.

*Source: MANDASOFT data.
jacksheen0000  +   1117d ago

Preparation is key in the gaming industry.

So, I think Nintendo want a contingency plans in place just in case the wii U doesn't work out.

If the wii U fails, I believe Nintendo will stop making the home TV console and make a handheld system one can use at home as well as on the go.

Though, merging the R&D departments together is just a temporary move in case things don't work out. And if it doesn't work out for Nintendo, they will at least be prepared and know what to do for next Gen.
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Neonridr  +   1117d ago
I love how everyone thinks that if one console that Nintendo produces fails, their company will go bankrupt. The handheld market is an area that Nintendo seems to know best, no doubt about that. But honestly, if the Wii U fails, we may just see a successor come earlier than expected. Nintendo has been around nearly twice as long as Microsoft and Sony, but people seem to think that Nintendo will be the first to exit the market. Sony has only produced 3 generations of home consoles, and Microsoft has produced 2. The Wii U marked the 6th home video game console for Nintendo, give these guys a little credit.
jacksheen0000  +   1117d ago
Hears the thing, I speak for everyone when I say, I m getting tried of Nintendo making underpowered game console. The gimmick thing is starting to get old. Nintendo is falling behind and it shows. So if they don't get their act together this Gen they will suffer the consequence. I love Nintendo and have long supported them in everything they do. But it annoys the hell of me when they use secrecy, tricks, gimmicks, and everything imaginable toward getting us all to invest our hard money in to a game console that does nothing more than play the same old 1st party game over and over again. Truth be told, I want Nintendo to succeed and don't want them to fail. The the stunt Nintendo pulled this year alone by hiding the specs of the wii U was uncalled for. It took a hacker's ambition to reveal to all the true power of the wii U.

Nuff said.
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Neonridr  +   1117d ago
All the hacker did was show the clock speed of the chips inside the system. And that means jack crap, because if we were so focused on clock speeds, then how come something that has apparently 1/3 the clock speed of the 360 still manage to put out games that are either on par or better (Trine 2, Rayman Origins) than what the 360 can do? Clock speeds mean jack crap, it's all about the architecture of the chips and how they are used. Are you saying a 3.0Ghz Pentium 4 is faster and better than a 2.0Ghz i5?

There was no secrecy with the Wii U, they showed you the main selling point of the system right from the get go. The controller is what makes up the Wii U system. It is what makes it great, and what gives it its potential. Sure, maybe we were hoping for a little bit more juice under the hood, but Sony has learned twice in the handheld market that having more power doesn't mean jack crap (PSP and Vita).
delboy  +   1117d ago
Since some analysts are predicting the eventual demise of home consoles... Lol

They are clueless more than average Joe gamer.
In 2013 we're going to have more home consoles then ever, steam box, wiiu, ouyea, ps4,xbox8 and there's a rumor going around another home console in 2014 is joining the party.
DivineAssault  +   1117d ago
it makes sense.. just as sony & ms will possibly have 1 tablet that does the same nx nx gen
rowdyBOY  +   1117d ago
nintendo have damaged the video game industry enough with their soccer mum approach .

i say "the sooner nintendo leaves , the better !!! ".

who would have thought sega and nintendo , not making consoles anymore ?
SerodD  +   1117d ago
What damage have they done to the industry?
PopRocks359  +   1117d ago
Yes, making the gaming industry more widespread and more financially successful is totally damaging. /sarcasm
ShaunCameron  +   1117d ago
And what would Sony and Microsoft have done to dispel the notion of video games being a domain of lonely insecure teenage boys?

The funny thing is Nintendo, the supposedly kiddie company, made it cool for adults to play video games now than both Sony and Microsoft the supposedly mature companies.
chukamachine  +   1117d ago
Hopefully Nintendo will just become a software company.
BlackWolf  +   1117d ago
Only. In. Your. Dreams.
animegamingnerd  +   1117d ago
why do you want them to become one?
a_adji  +   1117d ago
we are happy for Apple to sell their hardware with only their software and it works well for them but Nintendo does it and third parties cry, consumers cry etc. Buy the other systems then.

All these companies make money that's that.

I am not in their business per say so I let them get on with it and if they give me something I like I will buy it and if I dont I wont. simples
jjank11  +   1117d ago
This is a good move.

Also, I can't stand the folks bashing the Wii U and its "underpowered parts". I literally have close to the best PC you can build at the moment and I enjoy playing Cave Story, Trine, Super Meat Boy and other games similar to that (i.e. not graphically intense) and probably play those type of games almost as much as I do the graphically intense games like BF3 or similar. I don't think folks have any perspective. Wake up!
shackdaddy  +   1117d ago
Ya. The simplistic indie games that Steam has are definitely my favorite despite my nice PC.

Actually, I think those are the only games I've been playing in the past couple months besides Planetside and Red Orchestra. I really haven't really played a graphically intense game since Metro...
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RFornillos4  +   1117d ago
the title's misleading. the original news doesn't indicate a shake-up, but rather synergy of divisions. they will basically combine the resources of the handheld and the home console division into one geographic location (a new building that is almost complete), so that they can streamline the processes, and ultimately integrate them and organized by function (i.e. all working on chips or circuit will be located in one location instead of two separate locations), which just makes sense.

the statements also indicated that because game development is becoming larger and longer to complete, the integration will speed up the sharing of development processes between handheld and console devices. the interaction between engineers will also be a potential hotbed of new ideas.

in fairness to the author, he's hoping that the "shake-up" is for a positive outcome. but again, based on the original news, "shake-up" is just not the right word to describe the restructuring.

personally, going back on Miyamoto's desire to explore further on the cross-play functions of Wii U and 3DS, this restructuring may just be what Nintendo needs.
MattS  +   1117d ago
It's a complete organisational restructure.

It's a shake up.
Dlacy13g  +   1117d ago
I see no sign of Nintendo getting out of either side of their hardware business. That said, this move most likely will slow down some of the "iterations" we have seen for each side given it now will all come from one unit.
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ALLWRONG  +   1117d ago
Shake up? LOL Seriously?
wiiulee  +   1117d ago
lol...these haters need to grow up...stop crying over wii winning last generation already and embrace the wiiu its a fantastic system...and nintendo combining only helps the games come out quicker for wiiu and 3ds and they can combine ideas and innovate together and release works on both systems.
RuleofOne343  +   1117d ago
So does this mean we won't have to listen to Reggie BS his way at events.
Spenok  +   1117d ago
He says this, "I'm more inclined to see this in the positive, former light however."

Yet his titles is this, "Nintendo shake up could mean the end of Nintendo hardware as we know it"

MattS  +   1117d ago
Some people realise that change isn't necessarily a bad thing.

What's good for Nintendo's business is good for everyone.
Spenok  +   1116d ago
That's not what I'm getting at. I understand what you say, and even agree with it.

However his title and opinion contradict each other. That was my point.
cyclindk  +   1117d ago
Nintendo could just drop the dedicated console deal, keep a handheld and make their games available across Sony, Micro, PC and other platforms and clean up on royalties.
PopRocks359  +   1117d ago
How about no. Part of the reason their content works so well is because it's made on their hardware which they understand better than anyone. Taking that away cripples their development process.
cyclindk  +   1116d ago
So... Mario games would be difficult to bring to tablets and touch phones?

You have anything AGAINST more people being able to enjoy Nintendo products?

There's nothing technically unique about their games' designs which would not be "portable" to other platforms (minus, perhaps, a few motion-relative features which have only come with the Wii generation).

IDK, guess some folks are just overly protective/defensive about exclusivity and so forth.

May the reign of Nintendo exclusivity last forever!
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PopRocks359  +   1116d ago
Wow, you COMPLETELY missed my entire point. That's pretty amazing given how bluntly I made it.
cyclindk  +   1116d ago
If your point is that they know their hardware well.. it's because they make it that way. They could easily go "off the shelf" and devs and everyone wouldn't have a problem with it.

They do it to protect their assets, nothing more. Same as Apple.

Going "mainstream" hardware-wise wouldn't "cripple" anything..
#18.2.1 (Edited 1116d ago ) | Agree(0) | Disagree(1) | Report
cyclindk  +   1115d ago
Do you even care to attempt to refute one of my points as I have done with yours before disagreeing?
3-4-5  +   1117d ago
So Nintendo is switching to Micro-Gens.

Instead of a new hardware or console every 8 years it's every 4 years. But they won't just have new consoles, their next one will include an upgradeable part of some kind that they can start producing at a later date to update the system's hardware.
fatstarr  +   1117d ago
why would they essentially cut double market share, cut 2 different markets, 2 different age ranges and put it on 1?

Nintendo knows they own the handheld market, the would never do anything to mess that up. Nintendo is the most unique company In my opinion. the widest age range of customers and users.
Max-Zorin  +   1117d ago
Poor Nintendo. Just blacklisted for no reason.
isyourhouseonfire  +   1116d ago
Dang, Microsoft's dominance has ruined the gaming industry as we know it. As gamers, at least we still have Microsoft...

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