News Article

Nintendo 2DS is Actually Made With Just One Screen

Posted by Andy Green

An interesting innovation

Earlier today Nintendo formally announced the 2DS, which is essentially a 3DS that doesn't show images in 3D.

Interestingly, it does not feature the typical clamshell design we're all used to and it turns out that would have been pretty tough to accomplish, as the 2DS is in fact made up of just one screen — the appearance of two is just an illusion created by the casing.

In a product outline on USgamer, it's stated that in order to lower costs Nintendo reduced the number of screens in the system from two to one. Of course, this means the whole screen is a touchscreen but the top one cannot be pressed as it is protected by a layer of plastic that sits above it.

It would be interesting to know if this is the reason for the lack of clamshell design, though it's likely also down to the child-friendliness the lack of a hinge brings to the console.

What are your thoughts on this innovation? Let us know in the comment section below.

[via usgamer.net]

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User Comments (85)

WiiUExposed

#1

WiiUExposed said:

The only reason to even consider this thing would be the $40 lower price. Otherwise there's not much point. Whatever, more models can't be a bad thing.

Jaydenn

#2

Jaydenn said:

Fair enough, I guess. As pointless as it may seem to us, releasing it alongside Pokémon..? Genius.

ScorpionMG

#3

ScorpionMG said:

A great thing to move younger players to handhelds rather on mobile phones! And this can be affordable for people that don't have enough for a 3ds but want to play 3ds games, Good Job Nintendo! You did something similar with creating the wii Mini :)

sjmartin

#4

sjmartin said:

Thank you @ScorpionMG for being one of the few intelligent people to realize that the 2DS is for children. Plain and simple.
All the people who are claiming Nintendo has made a mistake or that it's an ugly system need to realize Nintendo didn't make this system for them. They made it for the 4-8 year olds who want to play Pokémon and Mario, but their parents are worried about getting them a system they could break or a system with 3D that they shouldn't be looking at anyway.
Internet trolls need to take a break, pause for a minute, and let logic prevail before posting whatever useless idea pops in their head.
And while people are at it, the editors here at NintendoLife may want to go back and edit their articles so their things about the 2DS don't make them look as uninformed as they do right now.

Ryo_Hazuki-san

#5

Ryo_Hazuki-san said:

this will be great for those rough little kids that break the kinges ont he old 3ds .. nintendo has child proofed their design BRAVO !

Bassman_Q

#7

Bassman_Q said:

Eh, I still think it's a pretty pointless move, but I suppose if it is aimed at younger kids, it KINDA makes sense... I'll just not buy it and move on.

Einherjar

#9

Einherjar said:

I would actually get one if Nintendo would introduce an actual account system, so that you can easily and comfortably switch between systems. This design is perfect for gaming on the go, which i do on my daily train travels to and back from work. But i dont want to miss out on 3D permanently and since the number of allowed system transfers is finite, i have to stick to my 3DS XL.

I-U

#11

I-U said:

The fact that it doesn't use the clamshell design makes it come off as a much newer handheld than the 3DS, and I think they should have went with this as their next generation handheld in the first place. I really want one.

DeadAntelopesGo

#12

DeadAntelopesGo said:

This is actually a great business move. Targeting the very young audience should increase 3DS sales a lot, and this machine probably costs next to nothing to produce. Excellent move, whoever came up with this is smart.

Folkloner

#13

Folkloner said:

I get that its for children, thus not having a clam-shell design means they're less likely to damage the hinges...but, the point of the hinges is so you can close the system to protect the screens. In the 2DS model, the screens are totally unprotected meaning all you've done in that respect is traded one potential issue for another.

sinalefa

#18

sinalefa said:

@ferthepoet

Why the hatred? They are still making the clamshell 3DS.

Hopefully that layer of plastic over the "top screen" actually protects it.

RupeeClock

#19

RupeeClock said:

I think it's worth pointing out that the system appears to sport a single speaker, rather than two. On the left is your speaker, on the opposite is your notification LED.

The system might only support monaural sound, but still sports a headphone jack that probably supports two audio channels as needed, as on a handheld you often do only notice stereo sound when using headphones.

MussakkuLaden

#20

MussakkuLaden said:

Well, that just supports my guess: Nintendo is testing ground for a next gen tablet handheld / home console controller hybrid.

SyFyTy

#21

SyFyTy said:

N will be selling a game PAD next gen, you wait and see if I'm not right about this... this the first step... I saw that one coming yesterday..

the_shpydar

#22

the_shpydar said:

@sjmartin
You are my new best friend. :)

Sadly, this is the internet, so logic rarely (read: never) prevails, especially amongst the whiny gamer population. But it is always good to know there are some other people out there who actually have common sense and are able to reason things out in a logical fashion. Spock approves of you.

VolcanoFlames

#23

VolcanoFlames said:

Nintendo... 2DS? That's interesting. But seriously, did Ninty do any Direct? A lot of news today...

VolcanoFlames

#24

VolcanoFlames said:

Nintendo... 2DS? That's interesting. But seriously, did Ninty do any Direct? A lot of news today...

meltendo

#25

meltendo said:

I would consider this if Nintendo had an account system like Apple or Sony.

I hate the idea of having to buy a digital purchase twice because of a new device.

AgentAPE

#26

AgentAPE said:

as a gamer with big hands, the shoulder buttons on this thing look great. Seems to me that nintendo has made a butt load of cash from the original and xl series to even have given this the ok. I also like the kid friendly approach, my nephew broke his 3ds plug port sometime ago, the hinge and L trigger are next.

retro_player_22

#28

retro_player_22 said:

Not really interesting in this new model but not really disappointed either as I understand Ninty's target audience for this. It's a win-win for all I guess.

Mk_II

#29

Mk_II said:

@RupeeClock according to the 2DS fact sheet on the Nintendo site you are correct. Mono speaker, stereo headphones. They've really gone to town cutting costs. But i do like the pad-like design and will certainly buy one for my collection.

KingH3nrry

#30

KingH3nrry said:

@IAmAPerson I think Nintendo may have made it so that it couldn't fit in a pocket. The reason could be because they don't want kids carrying it around, so the kids can just give it to their parent to hold. That way, there's less of a chance of it breaking.

SMW

#31

SMW said:

So the "two" screens are really one big one. I'd like to see how this looks with the casing removed. Of course no games would support the "top" touchscreen, but it'd still be interesting to see.

DarkEdi

#32

DarkEdi said:

I love the 3D effect, so this console isn´t for me.

A really joke thing: The classification "E" is for 6 years or older. Then nobody can play a 2DS if they uses the USRB.

Ralizah

#33

Ralizah said:

So this... thing... isn't even really a DS, right?

I like the fact that it has plastic in front of the top screen. It'll make it a lot harder for kids to damage. The lower screen, though...

JaxonH

#35

JaxonH said:

I like it. Of course I'll be buying one, seeing as I buy every model of Nintendo hardware.

Pink_Floyd

#36

Pink_Floyd said:

A lot of people this holiday will be asking "where are the 2DS games". Nintendo should of spent the money elsewhere. SMH

aaronsullivan

#38

aaronsullivan said:

@Pink_Floyd
Why because people are coming to the store looking for games? You realize the next step, right? The store clerk tells them ALL the 3DS games will work on the 2DS and the DS games, too. Either that or the kid will tell them.

So... not seeing the problem really. It's a lower barrier for entry for many prospective buyers right when THE killer app (Pokemon) is going to be released and it's likely making a similar profit margin for Nintendo.

Looks win-win to me and no skin off anyone's back who already owns a 3DS.

What else is the hardware group working on that you are worried about them being distracted from?

Pink_Floyd

#41

Pink_Floyd said:

@aaronsullivan My point is not everyone is in the loop. I have been in Wal-Mart and Target and overhear people ask what’s the difference between a DS and a 3DS, the clerk most of the time doesn’t know. I’ve even heard the sales person say you can play 3DS games on a DS. So no not everyone knows the difference.

And when you say hardware what about the WII U gamepad. The battery life in it is poor. My 3DS circle pad is starting to stick. What about an account system?

rjejr

#43

rjejr said:

Im pretty sure there were people onthis website saying Nintendo couldnt bring their DS and 3DS games to tablets b/c of the 2 screens. Well this solves that problem. Though they should have made the divider thinner for games that like the 1 tall screen look. And the bottom wider for DS games.

My kids had DS systems about age 7, I really dont see the need for this at this price, maybe at $99 w/ all they skimped more people might pick it up, $129 is just too close to $169.

Will they get rid of the DS systems now or will stores stock DSi, 3DS, 3DS XL and 2DS in alltheir colors. Thats a lot of shelf space.

SCAR392

#44

SCAR392 said:

The reason why it's 1 screen, is because it's cheaper to have a bunch of similar machines producing one screen, rather than 2 types of machines running 2 different screens.

I.E. Having 4 machines run one part, instead of 2 running 2 different parts.

Since the 3DS regular models have 2 different screens, they probably run into occurrences where they have more of one screen than the other.

I used to work at a factory, so I know this makes total business sense. Production is higher when you only have to produce one part, because neither one is relying on the other in order to make a complete product.

The reason they did this is obviously based on how the console was designed, though.

EDIT: You can basically up production rates by 400% by doing what Nintendo just did.

donssword

#45

donssword said:

My 47 year old eyes will be all over this. My son just got a 3DS XL for his b-day, and the eye strain it causes me when I use it is unbearable. Of course, I don't find any of the 3DS games compelling enough to upgrade from my DSL yet, but I can easily see this being a $99 Black Friday sale item, and then I can rationalize the purchase more easily.

ramstrong

#46

ramstrong said:

>In a product outline on USgamer, it's stated that in order to lower costs Nintendo reduced the number of screens in the system from two to one. Of course, this means the whole screen is a touchscreen but the top one cannot be pressed as it is protected by a layer of plastic that sits above it.

I am curious as to how do they know the touchscreen covers the whole display? It is very much possible to use existing touchscreen being rotated 90 degrees. In fact, I would imagine that would be cheaper and more reliable than covering the top half with hard plastic. The tone seems confident, does the author have any secret source, or is that merely conjecture?

Also, I have yet to see the picture for the other side. One speaker? Does that mean it comes with one camera on the other side, too?

Gridatttack

#48

Gridatttack said:

Well, even if the top screen is a touchscreen, no game is programmed to take action if it is tapped :P

(unless easter egg)

Morphbug

#51

Morphbug said:

You guys do know that the touch part of the screen on these things is not actually the screen right?

It's a layer of different tech they put on top of a normal screen. No need to waste touchness here by covering the top part.

They simply put the touch tech on the needed part, not the whole thing!

StarDust4Ever

#53

StarDust4Ever said:

One screen, eh? The successor to 3DS will likely be a Wii-U Gamepad like device that accepts DS and 3DS games. Probably a lot of wasted real estate on that screen

zionich

#55

zionich said:

Honestly I cant wait to get one for my son and one for my daughter. Well played Nintendo, well played.

mandemote

#56

mandemote said:

so its just a small wii u game pad with an illusion to look like it has 2 screens?

FullbringIchigo

#57

FullbringIchigo said:

@sjmartin it might be for children but i'm still getting one for myself as i never use the 3d on the 3ds as i'm blind in one eye (i only got it for the games)

plus the 3ds can get a little uncomfortable and with this one because they got rid of the clam shell design they could move the controls around a bit it looks like it could be better plus it should have a better battery life and the top screen should be easier to see in strong sunlight

MarioIdent

#59

MarioIdent said:

I'm actually starting to like the design now, but just three questions:

How does sleep mode work? If theres no sleep mode, theres no play coins for AR games, StreetPass Mii Plaza and other games...?

I wonder if StreetPass actually works... if it was me, I wouldn't carry it around with the screens on in my pocket... Perhaps when you press the power button, a menu comes up like the 3DS originally did, saying 'Enter Sleep Mode' and 'Power off'...?

EDIT: I found out it has a sleep mode slider thing on the bottom right of the 2DS.

I wonder why it has two cameras on the back of it...? (look at pictures from Nintendo's website)...

DualWielding

#61

DualWielding said:

@sinalefa

Because if the 2DS for some reason become a huge success you can bet that's the design they are going to use in their future consoles since its cheaper to produce than clamshell that's why I want it to fail

Psychomalone

#62

Psychomalone said:

I don't like the fact it doesn't have a hinge, but I do think it's gonna sell. If it wasn't the case that my wife and daughter already have 3ds' i'd probably just got one of these for them, as neither use or like the 3d function anyway

MarioIdent

#63

MarioIdent said:

@Psychomalone ,yeah, I just noticed that now XD... also where the brightness settings are on the 3DS HOME menu (I still don't know why they like to capitalize HOME...) , theres a settings icon! Perhaps they are making Settings a multitasking app! Please come to 3DS...?? The cameras still confuse me...

Conkers64

#66

Conkers64 said:

Am I the only one who finds it fascinating that it only has one true screen? It could be Nintendo trending toward creating a dedicated tablet. This could be their bridge device-- heck, remove the plastic center barrier and it is already. And as for who this targets, the answer is small children, and adults who play at home--but hate the 3d tech (I have several friends who literally hate it).

EaZy_T

#68

EaZy_T said:

To those who are wondering about dual cameras: I'd say it needs the two outward facing cameras for at least the AR games, even if the screen cannot display 3D.

Kifa

#69

Kifa said:

I'd say quite the opposite - none of the AR games actually require two cameras for anything except generating 3D images on screen. Spatial positioning can very well be done with just one camera, and I doubt developers would waste 3DS computational power just to use 3D image analysis.

2DS can very well have just one camera.

kenzo

#70

kenzo said:

I must be the only one posting who thinks the new 2DS looks like crap.

Its made for kids .... yeah right! It looks like it was made by kids.

The center of the 2DS needs to be a single rectangular touchscreen like any other tablet. This would make it better for web browsing or other multimedia content with touch capabilities.

One speaker ..... you cannot be serious !!! The best part of the original 3DS is the loud but clear stereo capability. This adds the audio immersion which is so important for games. I also liked the sound vibration feedback from the back of the clamshell through to my fingers.

A Wii U circle pad pro could be added to a widescreen 2DS. It would fit to the back of the 2DS in landscape mode with the Wii U gamepad buttons and controls.

An opportunity missed, and it won't save Nintendo any money either.

TenEighty

#73

TenEighty said:

I'll get two of these. One for my son and myself. I actually like it. Didn't care much for the 3D feature anyway. I just want to play fun and interesting games at a normal price. I'm not into these higher prices for features I don't really care for anyway.

NMH-TRI

#74

NMH-TRI said:

I honestly like it :) If I didn't already have a clamshell 3DS, I'd probably rock this. Oddly enough, my portable 3DS only comes with me on the plane or if I'm trading driving duties on a road trip. I have a backpack along in both of those places, so "portability" is a non-issue for me.

AcesHigh

#75

AcesHigh said:

"It would be interesting to know if this is the reason for the lack of clamshell design..."

Well... ummm... yeah?! It would be kinda hard to fold a single screen, wouldn't it? The single screen and lack of 3D is the single biggest reduction in component cost. That is really the driving factor in bringing this device to market. All of the research and feedback I've read form the medical and scientific community confirms that there is no risk to children under 5 or 7 from looking at 3D images. This was done to reduce cost and offer a lite version of the 3DS to increase the footprint for DS/3DS software sales.

I will say that it's kinda cool to see a bit of a throwback to the original Gameboy design! I like it!

DarkKirby

#76

DarkKirby said:

Dat cash grab.

I know Nintendo is a business but I was hoping they spent their money making better versions of the 3DS, not worse ones.

DanteSolablood

#77

DanteSolablood said:

@kenzo Only issue with having one single rectangular touchscreen in the middle of the console like a regular tablet would be that they couldn't call it the 2DS. "DS" stands for Dual Screens, they'd have to call it the 2SD for Single Display.... plus you can already buy those... they're called tablets. :P

I like it, this is something designed for the rough & tumble younger kids put their toys through, appeals to safety concious parent by dropping the 3D and has big ol' shoulder buttons to boot. If you don't like it... it's probably not designed for you.

If Nintendo ONLY made things to appeal to their core audience, we'd never get those risks that pay off... like beat 'em ups starring Nintendo's best characters. Even that was new once.

DanteSolablood

#78

DanteSolablood said:

In regards to using one big screen instead of 2 seperate screens - this isn't too surprising as there is no point having seperate screens unnecessarily. From a wholesale point of view though they'd be saving so little they'd have tp ship millions of 2DS to REALLY save cash.

sinalefa

#79

sinalefa said:

@ferthepoet

It will never happen since clamshell is portable unlike this one. Unless the next one only has one screen, in which case the clamshell design would be useless

TenEighty

#80

TenEighty said:

Like I said, I like this and plan on buying a couple. But there is one issue. The headphone jack is on the bottom. I know sometime when laying down and using headphones, I tend to rest the device on my chest. Wish they would have put it on the top-middle of the device instead.

Giggamer3000

#84

Giggamer3000 said:

I guess when nintendo releases this wonderful contraption they are going to have to write in big words on the box "for children between the ages of 4 and 7 because everyone seems to think its for them.

deusprogrammer

#85

deusprogrammer said:

There are two reasons I want this over a 3DS. Number one, I have an eye condition which prevents me from seeing 3D, so the 3D effect was a waste on me. So a cheaper handheld sans 3D is perfect to me. To me 3D movies and games are a fad I wish would die for rather selfish reasons.

Secondly, I have big hands, so holding a 3DS from the bottom and having the screen up top makes it a little uncomfortable to hold for me. So holding this thing from the middle and using it's beefy shoulder buttons is like a dream come true. Just my two cents for what they are worth.

As far as the screens, if you buy a case, protecting the screens will be easy.

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