Despite Wii U's decidedly underwhelming life, Nintendo thankfully isn’t abandoning the home console market just yet. Ninty's President and CEO, Satoru Iwata, has announced that “As proof that Nintendo maintains strong enthusiasm for the dedicated game system business, let me confirm that Nintendo is currently developing a dedicated game platform with a brand-new concept.” Codenamed the NX, we'll be getting more information on the console next year.
Whether this dedicated gaming platform will take the same form as our current disc based set-ups is unclear. The fact that the NX ties in so tightly with Nintendo’s new online membership service means that connection is now key for the company. While the Wii U was mentioned as a part of the new offering, another console is obviously going to be Nintendo’s priority.
“Unlike the Club Nintendo membership service that Nintendo has been operating, the new membership service will include multiple devices and create a connection between Nintendo and each individual consumer regardless of the device the consumer uses,” said Iwata. “This membership will form one of the core elements of the new Nintendo platform that I just mentioned.”
It will be interesting to see whether this means that the axed rewards program of Club Nintendo is being replaced with something like PlayStation Plus or whether a new gaming platform all together is being teased. Could Nintendo’s new offering be a under TV streaming service in the vein of the Vita TV?
Given that the NX will become part of the Nintendo console family as well as the key new additions of PCs and smartphones, it’s safe to say that whatever we hear next year, Nintendo isn’t ignoring the fact that it’s been frustratingly behind the times when it comes to online connectivity. This can only be a good thing when it comes to playing our favourite games on more screens than ever before but it's Wii U that will potentially pay the price.