Iwata Reiterates Desire to Expand Nintendo’s Business

Still no hint as to Nintendo’s new strategy.

By Marc Deschamps. Posted 04/28/2014 15:00 Comment on this     ShareThis

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In January, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata left fans and pundits curious about the future direction of the company. In a vague statement, Iwata promised that Nintendo would expand into a new business area with non-gaming products that would improve people’s quality of life. In a recent interview with Diamond.jp, the company president offered some limited elaboration on those statements.

Iwata began his statements by saying that, while Nintendo has been mainly known as a video game company, the company “can do whatever it wants.” Iwata discussed how this new strategy can be traced back to statements made by his predecessor, Hiroshi Yamauchi.

“Yamauchi always said ‘Nintendo is an entertainment company and should never be anything else’, but he didn’t necessarily think ‘entertainment equals video games’,” said Iwata. “I was wondering how to express Yamauchi’s feelings, and I thought about it non-stop, even during the New Year’s holiday break.” He continued:

“Recently the words ‘quality of life’ have been coming up regularly. Entertainment is there to improve people’s quality of life. After your basic needs, there’s entertainment. However, when it came to improving people’s quality of life, I didn’t know the difference between us and household appliance makers. At the start of this year, I finally figured that the concept of ‘improving people’s quality of life with fun,’ with emphasis on the ‘fun’, would be perfect for Nintendo. And that’s why I decided to focus on this during the financial results meeting in January.”

While these statements do give us a bit more insight, it’s still difficult to discern exactly what Iwata and Nintendo could be planning. Nintendo has had its share of flops, but it’s also responsible for some of the gaming industry’s greatest innovations. The public may not have embraced efforts such as the Virtual Boy, but the company has also been responsible for a number of other seemingly questionable innovations that turned out to be very successful. One only need to look at Sony and Microsoft’s dismissal of motion controls and subsequent embracing of the technology to find one such example. Nintendo has pushed the industry forward in a number of ways. Hopefully, this will be the start of the next big thing.

Do Iwata’s comments fill you with hope about the future of Nintendo? As always, let us know what you think in the comments below.

Source: Forbes

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