For the longest time, Nintendo executives either ignored or dismissed the growing impact of gaming on the iPhone platform. They would consistently scoff at the quality of the games while at the same time assert that the two companies served entirely different demographics.
But with gaming on the iPhone and iPod Touch emerging as a bona fide and arguably unstoppable force, it was only a matter of time before Nintendo had to wake up and see Apple for what it truly was – a threat.
The Nintendo DS has been a rousing success for the Japanese game maker, but there’s no denying that the versatility of the iPod Touch (games + music + movies + internet) was making it a more attractive handheld device than the DS while fundamentally impacting Nintendo’s bottom line. In fact, Nintendo’s profits took a hit recently for the first time in six years.
And now, the sleeping giant has awoken.
The Times Online reports that Apple’s continued success in the mobile gaming sphere has finally attracted the full attention of Nintendo President Satoru Iwata. Iwata has reportedly told his minions that Nintendo’s battle with Sony (Will vs. PS3) has been won, and that the next battle will be against Apple.
Driving the point home, Iwata told executives and employees at Nintendo that they should now view the iPhone and iPad devices as the “enemy of the future.” Especially concerning for Nintendo is that the iPhone, iPod Touch, and the iPad have proven to be viable gaming devices for children and families – the exact demographic Nintendo worked hard to court with its successful DS handhelds.
And so, the battle lines have been drawn, and Nintendo is “preparing to unleash the full force of its development and marketing artillery against Apple.”