Could NX be just a portable?

Apparently there are some new rumors about Nintendo’s next-gen console codenamed ‘NX.’ It seems that the rumor of the NX being a portable device has gotten a lot stronger.  Reports have the device coming with an HDMI dongle that would allow for gamers to output gameplay to a TV.  The portable also includes ‘haptic feedback’ in the analog sticks.  It has Bluetooth-syncing technology to where you can receive text messages and phone calls on screen without having to close the app or game.  Once again, in terms of “power” it had been likened to being on the level of an XBOX One, or possibly 50% stronger than Wii U or 2x as strong as PSVita.  In any event, it would be the most powerful handheld Nintendo has ever released. 

The biggest piece of information from this rumor comes from the fact that developers have touted how easy development is for NX.  You can take your port, compile it, and it works just fine.  So whatever architecture it uses be it ARM or x86 it seems to be fully compatible with ports from the PS4 and XB1.  This could be why Nintendo has waited as long as they have to dole out dev-kits en mass.  In my opinion, if it is as easy as people claim to port games then developers should be able to get by with SDKs until dev-kits are available for everyone.  The new rumor comes from Dualpixels.

Now this rumor has added fuel to the fire of the NX being a portable ONLY console. We heard earlier this year in another rumor that NX would output 900p/60fps resolution and frame rate, and have the ability to stream 4K movies and content.  No one has confirmed or denied those rumors so they are still fair game if you ask me.  There are some things to consider.

Just a few days ago we saw in the latest Nintendo Direct that Nintendo and the Pokemon Company will be releasing Pokemon Sun and Moon for the 3DS.  Typically, whenever Pokemon games are released for any Nintendo handheld there is a bump up in sales.  Particularly in the holiday season.  So if Pokemon Sun and Moon are presumably coming this Holiday you would think there would be strong forecasts for 3DS sales.  However, Nintendo has done just the opposite.  They slashed forecasts of 3DS hardware sales as well as software sales by 34%.  That’s a bunch.  When I first heard that it kind of puzzled me, but then I thought about the NX portable.

If Nintendo knows it is releasing the NX portable in 2016, obviously 3DS sales are going to go down.  Software sales for both 3DS and Wii U would go down also.  Strangely though, Nintendo has not slashed forecasts of Wii U HARDWARE sales.  Kind of scratching my head with that one, but I’ll address that in a future blog on a theory I have.

It seems like where there is smoke there is fire.  Going all the way back to January 2014 when we first heard about the “Nintendo Fusion” rumor the one constant has been of the NX having a console part and a handheld part.  It seems like now that NX could be just a handheld that turns into a home console when needed.  I’ll tell you, if 900p/60fps and power of an XB1 is all it can do from a CONSOLE standpoint, that is not good news.  This is not supposed to be a 8th-gen replacement console for Wii U.  This is supposed to be a 9th-gen console.  Having two consoles on the market that are not on-par with the PS4 makes no sense to me. 

Also, where does this leave the Wii U?  Nintendo has stated over and over that they are not done with the Wii U and as I stated earlier they have NOT slashed hardware forecasts for the Wii U.  If you have a portable console that is more powerful than the Wii U, that has more features than the Wii U, and most likely far more 3rd-party support than the Wii U, why would you need the Wii U at all going forward?  There is something fishy going on here.  There is still a lot that we don’t know about in terms of the Wii U’s hardware set up.  It is so customized that even the biggest tech-heads can only do a cursory evaluation of the Wii U’s power level.  Could it be that the Wii U IS the home terminal of NX?  Hmmmmm……..

  • Superb piece as usual bro. Great breakdown. It does look like Nintendo is most definitely implementing a portable device, either as the main device or in combination with something else.

  • Thanks. I think however that NX is starting to become somewhat of a conundrum. There are some very peculiar things going behind the scenes.

  • The other rumors saying that a wireless HDMI dongle is included with the console/handheld also aids in believing that this is mainly a handheld.

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