News Article

Rumour: Nintendo Employee Discusses Work on "Tablet With Educational Games"

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Nintendo of America declines to comment

As far as rumours go, this is certainly one that's catching on, as Nintendo of America employee Nando Monterazu — described in his Twitter profile as a Software Engineer — posted a series of messages regarding his involvement in a tablet device separate from the Wii U and its GamePad; it'll supposedly have a purpose of delivering educational games to schools featuring Nintendo characters.

His tweets on the subject, first of all, are below — some that are essentially duplicates have been omitted.

We should note that Mr Monterazo has seemed to have issues (in the past) with his Twitter account being hacked, and a duplicate still exists with no related content to his work, yet with a day having passed his account activity has continued as normal — this has included retweeting job listings from Nintendo of America. With the tweets in question remaining today we contacted Nintendo of America for comment; we were given the expected response.

Nintendo doesn’t comment on rumors or speculation.

The idea of Nintendo producing specialised educational tablets for schools, featuring the company's characters, isn't unreasonable; just recently Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime outlined his thoughts on a mobile strategy for Nintendo.

We're constantly thinking about how to leverage mobile as a marketing vehicle. How do I give little tastes of content, little experiences that then drive the consumer back to my hardware environment?

With the rumour spreading widely it's certainly a topic worth contemplating, especially with Nintendo's recently marketing being heavily focused on winning over the next generation of young gamers. Even if the source is far from conclusive and Nintendo of America isn't willing to comment, it's undoubtedly a source of debate whether Nintendo should produce tablet devices and educational games for schools, even if tablet hardware is required to do so.

What are your thoughts on this? Do you think it's likely to be true, and if so is it a solid strategy to pursue?

[via twitter.com]

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User Comments (47)

Benjerocks

#1

Benjerocks said:

Hopefully it's not true, no matter what, in ANY situation, I don't want my Nintendo games on Tablet. I doubt this rumor is true. :/

AVahne

#2

AVahne said:

Would be nice if true. It could complement all those learning laptops used in other parts of the world.

Nareva

#5

Nareva said:

Interesting. It would be a great idea. Younger and younger children are using tablets in school and at home to play educational games.

daveh30

#6

daveh30 said:

I'm torn. If Nintendo releases a product like this tomorrow, I would buy one for my 4 year old son, and my 5 month old daughter would get one when she's old enough. Educational toys featuring great characters from a company with a family oriented background, thats the kind of stuff I want to get for my kids.

On the flip side, as a 30 year old Nintendo fan, I feel like this would be the final nail in coffin as far as Nintendo's "kiddie" reputation. I wouldn't want to see Nintendo moving resources away from game development to do educational software. Deep down, I'm still holding out hope that we'll see Nintendo take a bit of a turn and release some darker, more mature games. Not like Xbox dudebro "mature", but you know... this would kill those hopes.

unrandomsam

#9

unrandomsam said:

Nintendo has done educational software before (Or allowed Mario to be used for such things.)

unrandomsam

#10

unrandomsam said:

Are Nintendo really aiming for 3 years and older with all their games ?

(Average intelligence 6 year old I know finds them too easy. The DS NSMB was a good challenge for him when he was 5 and that is it).

Pianist88

#12

Pianist88 said:

I can see something like this turning Nintendo's fortunes. I daresay there would be a separate division and teams within the company developing this type of product - I also wouldn't expect to see this in the electronics department but rather the toys section.

hydeks

#13

hydeks said:

I bet his next tweet will be "just got fired for being and idiot and blabbing on twitter" lol

Guitardude7

#15

Guitardude7 said:

Hey if this is true, I wouldn't mind it. I mean it won't be part of the actual line of Nintendo consoles right? It'll be something different, an expansion of Nintendos market. If it's a Nintendo OWNED tablet then its sure to be good right? it wouldn't interfere with the actual consoles and it'd be a nice option for parents. I don't see how this is a bad idea.

MF_MaxiMillion

#16

MF_MaxiMillion said:

Mobile compatibility seems to be a hot topic these days with the new gen. Maybe Nintendo wants to catch up with that in their way?

dizzy_boy

#17

dizzy_boy said:

It'll soon shut up all of those idiot share holders wanting Nintendo to make tablet games.
As long as Nintendo are the ones to produce the pad and control the content then it's up to them what they do with their franchises.

HyperSonicEXE

#18

HyperSonicEXE said:

Wow, Nintendo aggressively hitting schools, if true, eh?
Careful that you don't make your marketing too young, or you might drive your core away.

Falchion

#20

Falchion said:

What's the point of asking Nintendo for a response? They always say the same thing about rumors

ACK

#24

ACK said:

I personally feel tablets for education are a joke. They far more commonly distract than educate (which is really about maintaining focus).

That said, it's impossible to ignore the potential and Nintendo is uniquely suited to capitalize.

They excel at creating secure, durable, economical, and efficient hardware while maximizing ease of use and streamlining functionality. Hard to believe they couldn't produce something more suited for the educational market (more cost effective, energy efficient and less prone to be used to play non-educational games/apps and access social sites).

Moreover, with Nintendo's franchises and proficiency at bridging fun with discipline (Wii Fit, Brain Training, Nintendogs, etc.)... As well as their likely substantial wealth of archived educational content from the years...

Actually, considering all this with their unique knowledge of the technology and product design, it's strange that this wasn't a possibility sooner.

(Remember, Apple was saved from the brink thanks largely to the educational system wasting loads of taxpayer funds on substandard, mechanically flawed iMacs...)

tanookisuit

#25

tanookisuit said:

If this stays exclusively as an educational tool using Nintendo IP that would be fantastic. Back in the early 90s we had a few games to help learn such as Mario Teaches Typing on the PC and stuff like Mario is Missing, that numbers and letters game too. Designing a rugged cheap tablet that will help kids learn in a fun way would be very helpful and a nice extra source of revenue. If it clearly was steered clear of being another bs third tier of gaming and was just for learning I think they'd be on the right track of doing something excellent.

SomeBitTripFan

#28

SomeBitTripFan said:

/Imagines kids being dragged away from school, crying because they want to play Mario. Headlines the next day, "Wii U and 2DS sales skyrocket". :P

TruenoGT

#30

TruenoGT said:

I think Nintendo has to find a way to introduce kids to their franchises (like we all were at one point) in an era where more and more kids have tablets and smartphones rather than gaming systems. It's a gateway to their gaming products as they get older. Kind of how Camel Joe introduced kids to smoking. :)

KilluaZoldyck

#32

KilluaZoldyck said:

Doesn't nintendo already do educational software? like they made some sort of ds software to give guided tours in a museum or something like that?

Gioku

#34

Gioku said:

Sounds like a nice idea! A Nintendo educational tablet is something I'd like to see! If they made it, I'd hope to see them at my little sister's school. :)

HawkeyeWii

#35

HawkeyeWii said:

I would love to see, however unlikely, a tablet or phone made by Nintendo. I would buy that thing so fast, no matter the cost :p

allav866

#36

allav866 said:

As long as the educational games are better than "Mario is Missing!" "Mario's Time Machine" or "Mario Teaches Typing," then I guess there's no harm in it. Even so, Nintendo doesn't need to make their own tablet for that; just separate apps for Apple machines. I personally disagree with the idea of Nintendo making games on other systems, but for the sake of education, there's no reason to completely dismiss the idea.

StarDust4Ever

#39

StarDust4Ever said:

They've done it in the past: I used Mario Teaches Typing in the 90s to learn my keyboarding true story.

ECMIM

#40

ECMIM said:

Something like a Nintendo Pico? Sure, why not, thought that seems like a product marketing/differentiation nightmare what with the 3DS and U already catering to the kid market.

sadsack777

#41

sadsack777 said:

all I can say to this is Nintendo need more fresh players on there side I ve six kids from the age of 21 to 9 and all my kids as grown up using Nintendo

SetupDisk

#42

SetupDisk said:

Why are people thinking this would be a commercial product for the general market? As sad as it is, tablets are being used in early education already. If anything this would be a great way to get a new generation hooked on Nintendo so it would be a good investment.

AJWolfTill

#44

AJWolfTill said:

Not that Nintendo gives too many hoots about it's public image amongst the "gamer crowd" but I could see this putting younger people off these characters if they associate them with learning. Then again they made those Type with Pikachu games right?

XavandSo

#45

XavandSo said:

I am genuinely shocked at the Mario Teaches Typing hate, I own MTT 2 and I found it quite fun! Anyway, I'm mixed with the idea of a Nintendo Tablet. If done right, it'll kick Apple and Google's duopoly in the shins and boost Nintendo's mainstream hardware. On the otherside, it could weaken the Nintendo brand and damage core gamers.

motang

#46

motang said:

I heard this yesterday, I love this idea. I would totally buy this for my kids (future kids)!! Dr. Mario can teach us! :D

RADencker

#47

RADencker said:

Nintendo has done something similar in the past, but they utilized the DS system running specialized educational software, instead of a specialized hardware device as in this story. I can see this happening for educational purposes, but NOT for sale to consumers.

On a side-note, I'd totally buy either of the mock-up devices if they were real. I can see them both as a phone actually, instead of a tablet device

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