News Article

Nintendo Reveals 'Mario Kart TV' Web App in Financial Results Briefing

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Connecting with NNID will provide extra features

Earlier today we shared a report from Nikkei announcing a Mario Kart 8 website or app in translated comments from a Satoru Iwata press conference. Now that the translated investor briefing has been released we have some more firm details and a screen of the service in action.

This will be a web service to launch around the same time as Mario Kart 8, rather than a dedicated platform-specific app for iOS and Android; it's adopting a similar approach to the Miiverse web browser site, in that respect. It'll offer a variety of neat tools and features, as outlined by Satoru Iwata below.

This web service will enable more people to easily watch Nintendo’s official videos, view rankings, watch videos that their friends have shared and videos of tournaments in which they have participated.

As I mentioned at the Corporate Management Policy Briefing in January, our policy is to establish consumer relationships based on accounts named Nintendo Network IDs, which are abbreviated as NNIDs. This “Mario Kart TV” (temp.) web service is available even for players without NNIDs, but by logging into the service with an NNID, they will be able to easily find their rankings, videos that their friends have shared, videos of tournaments in which they have participated, and it will be convenient to access this service through smart devices even when they are not at home.

We will work on providing this type of service so that players can enjoy video games more and be in contact with them even when they are not in front of a video game system.

The use of Nintendo Network IDs to customise the content shown should be a fun feature, and by opting for a web app that will mean access regardless of what device is in use.

Do you like the look of this Mario Kart TV service?


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User Comments (45)



2Sang said:

MK8 might be a game I have to buy just because I'm impressed with the creativity of course excluding pink gold peach (which is the dumbest thing I've seen in the series)



CharlieLoneWolf said:

Awesome. This is a great way to use smartphones/tablets to benefit them, without having to compromise the integrity of their IP's.



shinokami said:

It seems that Nintendo is starting to pick up, maybe the Wii U will recover this year after all



JaxonH said:

It would appear Iwata has brought in some western market advisors, because we're starting to see alot of moves that make proper sense. He's a good leader and the right man for the job, but like he said he didn't really understand the western markets. Fortunately, that is not an unsolvable problem. Bring advisors on board that can coach him on what's in demand here, and take it from there. Evidently that's exactly what's happened, because these announcements are hitting the nail on the head imo.



Kaze_Memaryu said:

Ugh... I understand the point of this, and I like the general outline. But I still hate this decision - it effectively encourages even more kids to scream for mobile devices (which legally only belong in the hands of adults), and thus alienates large groups of children from a social environment.



DrSlump said:

Webapp?? It's a wrong way, according to me. A dedicated app (for ios or android) would be much more visible than a web app that needs to be reached via a web browser. They should make their mktv more visible to smartphone users and make it a viral app so that the users wants to buy and play mk8... and so a wii u.



Peach64 said:

I'd prefer an app, but I guess Nintendo doesn't want to hire anyone in to create those. I like the idea though. About 8 years behind everyone else, but a step in the right direction.



Action51 said:

@Psyclone - Is that story about the Wii U no longer selling at a loss confirmed by an official Nintendo spokesman?

I'm pretty sure the Wii U still sells at a loss. I know tech always goes down in price over time, but I'd look for official verification first.



19Robb92 said:

Why just a Web app?

Both this and Miiverse would benefit from having an actual AppStore/AndroidStore app.



SanderEvers said:

@19Robb92 How? There is no use for an offline app, a web app can more easily be updated and is supported on all platforms. Also you don't have to deal with Store's policies.



SuperCharlie78 said:

I'm not good at smartphones, but could this be a proper app which would stay there on your dashboard and start directly?
Even if it must use the web browser I mean, could this be an automatic process?
Oh I'm a bit excited today, my english is poorer than ever



Emblem said:

@dwuuuu @Kaze_Memaryu Its a web service meaning it can be viewed on 3ds, tablets, other consoles or PCs not just phones. An app would exclude other consoles from using the service.



Emblem said:

@Peach64 @DrSlump Someone will make an unoffical app a week or two after release trust me. Nintendo wants PS3/4, X360/1, wii, vita, with does mobile owners to be able to access it hence the web browser.

Making it an app would mean to reach these ppl Nintendo would have to ask Sony and MS if they can plug their products on their systems, thats not going to happen.



Josaku said:

As I read that Mario Kart TV will be a smartphone ap I was lik:"YEAH!!!" and was rocking so hard I nearly fell out of my chair ^^" . . . but THIS is the kind of smartphone presence nintendo has to have, not some stupid little mario games which in-app-purchase ^^
Thanks Nintendo



PJR0cks said:

yeah, finally he's starting to learn, they have to create buzz, they have to be creative with their advertising and create a Nintendo frenzy.



Chris720 said:

Why don't they just make a Nintendo Network app? Have all this stuff in one easy to reach location and then a Miiverse app. Happy days for everyone.



JamesCoote said:

This is a good start as it shows Nintendo do get that people want companion apps and to do peripheral stuff around their gaming on their phones (like the rankings and stats stuff).

It's good as well that you can share to Youtube, as that suggests they are aware people want to tap into existing social networks rather than being forced into just using Nintendo -only stuff like Miiverse. (Not that Miiverse is bad, but it's good to have the option of sharing wherever you like).

The next big thing will be twitch integration and rolling this kind of functionality out to other games and third party developers



element187 said:

@SanderEvers app doesn't have to be offline.... Most apps in iOS and android are simple web based (html5). The point of an actual app is to make it visible to people without a WiiU/MK8 but do have smartphones when they visit their App Store and see it near the top if various lists.... By just having a link nobody but WiiU owners will check it out.



rjejr said:

Isn't "web app" an oxymoron or something? Either it's a website or it's an app. Could be both I suppose.



SphericalCrusher said:

Very nice! As I've mentioned before, I am a fan of video game tie-in websites and apps... so I'll be able to access this from work until I can get home and play it later. Looks sweet!!!



Sir_JBizzle said:

I prefer an Android/iOS app, but ultimately this is a smart move on Nintendo's part. With a web app, they don't have to worry about compatibility issues that crop up on phones with different OS versions and particularly in the case of Android, an app might be buggy depending on what phone you have. This is probably why we don't have an official Miiverse app yet.

@rjejr "Web app" is not exactly an oxymoron. A web app is software that's created in a browser supported program language, like HTML5, Javascript and such... Think HTML5 games, or Google Apps in the Chrome Browser. The U even has a web framework tool set in which to build games/applications from.



19Robb92 said:

For convenience. Same reason YouTube or FaceBook has one. It's bothersome to have to use the web browser to enter it. It would also manage to grab more peoples attention. I doubt even 2% of phone users know about Miiverse, having it appear on the store would make it more noticeable. Especially since its free.

I'm not saying they should scrap the web app. It's good for computers & stuff. But not having a downloadable app is a bummer to me. I've stopped using it on my phone.



rjejr said:

@JQuest - "Think HTML5 games, or Google Apps in the Chrome Browser."

Yeah, I know this, I was thinking more along the lines of the general public commonly accepted knowledge. W/ HTML5 making evil Flash go away I know programmers consider these to be "apps" w/in web pages, but for the general public if you tell them to go to a web page and use an app there you're going to confuse a lot of people.

Personally I hated the word "app" for years. Would start screaming at every Apple commercial on tv, but once I got an iPod Touch, then a tablet, now I prefer "apps" over webpages. And on a related note Travelocity stopped using ".com" in its commercials, so that's a start w/ that suffix going away.

Really Nintendo needs to just have both, an app and a website. And even if it's app in a website people are just going to keep calling it website.



c1pher_c0mplet said:

Mmm... I guess this is decent. I don't have a Wii U but if I did and bought Mario Kart 8, I wouldn't ever use this (although I'd be more prone to utilizing the MKTV features if they were perhaps included in the actual game itself). Whatever. We'll see how the masses take to it when it's released.



SanderEvers said:

@rjejr A web app(lication) is a website that displays dynamic data to the user and uses a sever side application. Those are usually written in ASP.NET (C#, VB), PHP, JSP (Java), Python or Ruby.

You could also see an HTML 5 + javascript website that uses an API as a Webapp.

A native application is actually the same on the backside. These applications communicate with a server or website to gather data and use native controls to show them to the user. Some of these apps actaully aren't any different from browser based apps since all they do is use the built in webbrowser in fullscreen mode. Apps like Facebook and Twitter do this.



rjejr said:

@JQuest - My comment was supposed to have one of these at the end but I wasn't awake yet and I was rushing out the door to get my kid to the bus stop, you certainly don't owe me any apologize for my ignorant sounding comment.



Bizzyb said:

I really think Nintendo should have an online service/community similar to Rostars Social Club, but better.



Chubblings said:

@JaxonH Yeah, a lot of people saying fire Iwata, but the problems he has are fixable. Many things that Nintendo's been doing/revealing over the past few days have been steps in the right direction/good news. (MKTV app, NFC, Wii U not sold at loss, Bayo 2 and Hyrule Warriors in Summer in Japan, e.t)



ledreppe said:

I would rather have a dedicated app, but this will be sufficient. I heard Ninty were working on a smartphone app that will allow users to pre-order (maybe pre-load) digital titles, and various other things like the Playstation one that's existed since day 1 of the PS4. I haven't heard anything about it for a while.



RickyWill said:

Since I'm going to be spamming my Wii U-less friends with my MKTV replays, this is good.



mamp said:

It's a start I guess but if anyone can take advantage of a smartphone's features it's Nintendo I think they need to make original IPs on smartphones, with the Nintendo brand people will eat it up.

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