News Article

QOL Trademark Filings Point to Quality of Life Branding Worldwide

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Short names rule for Nintendo

While the focus of many Nintendo fans is often on upcoming releases and new game announcements, it's easy to forget that the big N is planning to unveil a brand new platform in 2014 — its QOL (Quality of Life) product. It's still a mystery, yet the company is planning to release its health-driven product in the next financial year (1st April 2015 to 31st March 2016) following a 2014 reveal; it may not be too long before we learn what this platform is all about.

It'll apparently be separate from the Wii U and 3DS as a standalone platform, though there may be some interaction between the various devices. In any case, Nintendo seems keen to use that QOL moniker as the brand, with trademarks on the name now filed in North America, Europe and Japan. That certainly makes sense as an over-arching name, which can conveniently be expanded to clarify its aim of improving lifestyle and wellbeing; it also continues Nintendo's recent history of short names — DS, Wii, 3DS and Wii U.

We still don't know what QOL will be, beyond the company's statements that it'll expand its business and revenues and potentially achieve "blue ocean" success around the world. It'll incorporate a health-driven approach, non-wearable technology and will utilise Nintendo's experience in gaming, and the trademark filings for the U.S. cite games media, parts, accessories and systems as potential parts of the product; bear in mind that these filings generally cover as many bases as possible.

We broke down the announcement and researched the concept of non-wearable health equipment to put together our thoughts on what the QOL platform could be earlier this year. Details shouldn't be too far away, however, and it looks like QOL will become a familiar brand.


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User Comments (63)



Hy8ogen said:

@midnafanboy You owe me a broken keyboard and a monitor spilled with coke.

Not trying to defend Nintendo or anything but we hardly know what the QOL platform is or even does, and you guys are already dishing out judgement on the thing? Seriously, people nowadays just doesn't think twice before passing a judgement.



Captain_Gonru said:

I have no problem with expanding into new markets. It's SHIFTING into new markets that would be worrisome to me. There's a huge difference. One is trying to make money another way in addition to your current avenues. The other is trying to make money another way INSTEAD of current venues.
I'll buy a Triforce FitBit, but not if it means you don't have time to make a new Zelda too.
Also, I question their insistence on QOL. How is that pronounced aloud? Y'know, the way people tend to do? Is it like "coal"? Or more like "quill", but with an "o" sound? Too ambiguous. Seriously, who picks names over there? This is the third awkward and/or confusing name in a row for them.



baba_944 said:

I hate how people talk negatively about something they don't even know about yet. I'm am anticipating it.



AdmiralThrawn said:

This is likely to flop big time. I mean look at how the Wii U is doing. It is not doing well. If they continue down the road like this, they will eventually die. Once again, I blame Miyamoto and his garbage fighting robot game and that other garbage excuse for a new IP.



baba_944 said:

@AdmiralThrawn It's not Miyamoto's fault. It's "NINTENDO'S" . "NINTENDO" hasn't advertise the "Wii U". We have heavy hitters ("Super Mario 3D Word", "Donkey Kong Country 6", etc) it's just "NINTENDO" hasn't advertise it at all as far as I know.



Kyloctopus said:

From what it sounds like, it seems like something that can draw consumers.
The Touch Generation games definitely stood out in the consumer's eyes considering how big Brain Age, Wii Fit and Art Academy turned. But honestly, it's much better if they took their own space, and drew away from Nintendo's handheld and home consoles.
1. It's these games that drew the DS to popularity, and it's these ideas that grew the DS and Wii into success, and I think Nintendo wants a taste of that 7th Generation success in the 8th Generation and onwards, while being able to maintain a gamer focus as well.
2. This will maintain Nintendo's gamer focus for future consoles. Never will future consoles from Nintendo have a general audience. It will have a more gamer focus, and might be able to get the 3rd Parties back into Nintendo's hands.
It seems like Nintendo will now split their completely general audience into 2 groups: Those that come for games, and those that come to get fit. With this Berlin Wall of an idea. And I think it's genius.



NodesforNoids said:

It's funny, AdmiralThrawn, that someone with a self appointed title of 'Admiral' wouldn't think before he spoke.
How is a game, an exaggerated demo at that, to blame for nearly 2 years of Wii U failures.
I hope you like eating crow, as it seems to be what you're asking for.
Poor marketing, lacklustre 3rd party support, indie delays and a shallow release schedule are MUCH bigger problems for Nintendo right now.
And for the record, everyone thought Pikmin 3 was going to 'help turn things around' and it basically flopped.
Which was the last Miyamoto game. The bar seems pretty low as far as expectations are concerned.
Oh and then there's the dozen first party titles, two HUGE second party titles and.. uh.. OH YEAH. ZELDA.



baba_944 said:

@Kyloctopus Finally, someone who thinks logically about this whole ordeal. Thank you. "NINTENDO" has done it in the past and it works.



Sakura said:

Looks like someone was comissioned to do some research into the mass appeal of last gen consoles and focussed in on the educative potential of those devices - Brain Training, Wii Fit, Art Academy etc. Now they want a "something" to (re)capture that market.

Big companies and organisations always use garbage graphics like that to explain relatively simple concepts. (You should see what they dish out in the NHS!) A "standalone" platform apparently? Then why does the graphic show links to Wii and DS software? At this stage could just be a diary where you write down what you've done that day in terms of "educative" gaming! More information needed.



2Sang said:

Am I the only one excited about this potential? Sure games are better, but I'll take this too.



NintendoFan64 said:

@NodesforNoids You're right. Those are bigger problems. I don't know how AdmiralThrawn over there thought it was all because of Miyamoto. Right now I'm still at least hoping they can make things better a bit, though. Heck, after Mario Kart showed up, sales started to get a little bit better.



sinalefa said:

This QOL thing looks very useful for attracting trolls.

Too bad that is not an useful thing.



EverythingAmiibo said:

@2Sang As a sport and fitness hobbyist, I am! I love Nintendo and video games (and ALLOT of other geeky things!), but I also love working out and skateboarding, why would I not want a product that improves my fitness from a brand I know and love?



Golfshirt said:

I don't think Nintendo's done themselves any favors by announcing this so early and then being so vague about it ever since. Those question mark spaces in the above infographic make it look like even they have no idea what it's supposed to do.

Step 1: Announce "Quality of Life" platform.
Step 2: ???
Step 3: PROFIT!



WYLD-WOO said:

Here is my theory. The QOL will be some form of ipad (l'm calling it a life pad) that has a mixture of old and new touch based games. Imagine a system that would educate and help people with heath of all ages. Think of the possiblities on interaction between some of Nintendo current games like Will fit, brain training, art acadamy to name a few.

I believe many people purchased the DS and Wii for the reason of improving reaction/health or educating themselves. Nintendo want this market share back.



Latte said:

I'm really intrigued by this. Definitely looking forward to more info.



baba_944 said:

All these trademarks have one thing in common: liquid crystal displays. Very interesting now.



aaronsullivan said:

What this is beginning to sound like to me is a way to make a distinctive platform for all the Wii stuff that was successful and valued but doesn't really gel with "gamers". A way to de-muddle the messaging around a console. The next game consoles could have a very clear divide: casual platform with lifestyle stuff and/or gamer console.

This could be very good for Nintendo and Nintendo's customers, IMO.



MrGawain said:

Logically I guess it works like this: Wii U will be all about 'core gamers' (awful description but can't think of any better), while QOL will be for 'casuals' who want to play Wii Fit and Wii Fit U etc.... This way 'core gamers' won't feel marginalised that their Mum wants to use their console. QOL will be cheaper and not concentrate on power or graphics as much, and not be tainted with stuff like Bayonetta or Team Ninja games. It's there to pick up where the Wii left off.

I felt really sexist/ageist writing that, but I'm guessing that's what it boils down to.



SMW said:

Hopefully we'll be able to find out what all this means soon. Knowing Nintendo, it could be anything!



Windy said:

@baba_944 yup I'm scratching my head about Wii-U's advertising. Its almost like Nintendo didn't even bring out a new system. Like its a big secret or something. If they do a heavy ad campaign for this I will really be left a scratching my head.



Hero-of-WiiU said:

Ninten Gamers shouldn't be discussing this in a serious manner. It really may not relate to console or handheld gaming at all. Nintendo has been experimenting a lot lately with the evolving community and this is another example.



rjejr said:

When I read QOL my mind blends CQC (most hated aspect of MGS) and SOL, so it's not off to a promising start.

This might not even be in the games sections, it could be in the exercise aisle w/ the other equipment which gets purchased but never used. It could be the next iPad, or it could be the next Segway. Either way it isn't launching before April 2015.

Whatever it is, Amazon will have a cheaper knockoff product if it's successful, and 30 other companies will have apps on Android and iOS after they announce it but BEFORE they release it.

Maybe their R&D on this is the real reason the company is losing money and it isn't all the gaming divisions fault?



SomeBitTripFan said:

After reading @AdmiralThrawn's post, I just realized that the most hyped moment of E3 and most disappointing E3 had only one difference. One involved a game with a fighting robot, the other involved a game with a "SUPER FIGHTING ROBOT!!!"

As for the QoL platform, it doesn't sound appealing at the current moment, but I'm interested to learn what it is. My opinion may change upon the thing's release.



onex said:

"Robot and Frank". calling it now. JiBO sounds awfully close to Amiibo...



jedisquidward said:

@AdmiralThrawn Good job acting like you know about and then judging something not only before it comes out, but before there is even an idea as to what it actually is.



jedisquidward said:

Why are you all getting mad about this? This clearly isn't aimed at any of you. All Nintendo ever does is fanservice towards people who grew up with them and the second that they do something even slightly different, you all whine and complain and act like its the end of time if Nintendo acknowledges that you aren't the only people in the entire world. "OH MY GOD, NOT EVERYTHING IS SOLELY ABOUT ME? I CAN'T BELIEVE THIS! WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH ANYTHING DIFFERENT IS BAD!"



Minotaurgamer said:

Typical "gamer" behaviour: something is announced for mass market related to videogaming and they act hostile and elitist.

News flash children: gaming has always been "casual" and "mainstream" way before the industry started to wash your brains with dumb labels like "hardcore" "gamer console" "casual gaming" and other fallacies.

If any, "hardcore" gamers should be ignored. They are poisonus, selfish and only destroy what they touch. If that QOL platform, whatever it is, can do that, then bring it on!



8BitSamurai said:

Bashing all "hardcore gamers" by calling them "poisonous, selfish and only destroying what they touch" and insulting them by comparing them to children, after claiming they act "hostile and elitist". Congratulations.

The QOL platformer is the code name for the "rare downloads" program for Wii U and 3DS. They should be announced later in the year, but that's a secret, so shush.



Sleepingmudkip said:

Everyone always being angry of stuff they don't know about.

For all we know Nintendo might make a whole new teams for games like these and QOL stuff that will not effect other games at all. Nintendo might be expanding into the space of Heath & Education to gain more money as well as advertising their ips. We don't know nothing so we shouldn't be commenting on it.



ToniK said:

I have no idea what this could be but I welcome it nevertheless. I am getting older after all, and I could possibly be interested in some QOL (whatever that is). I can't see this harming other departments. They'll still deliver the few games they have to offer.



Lovomotif said:

Why are you guys complaining. Nintendo is tapping into a new market and that's good. I'm sure that they will somehow find a way to merge QOL with their games.

... Nah, I have no idea what this QOL platform will be.



0utburst said:

I'm still scratching my head on this one.

Maybe Nintendo is making a smartphone-like device which you can integrate your softwares and games? Or call services?
QOL = Call

Maybe some kind of gaming/fitness social networking service? A new Operating System maybe?



Dauntless said:

This is Nintendo's top secret plan? They are going to label their software so you know what category they belong to, because you couldn't figure out which one is suppose to get you in physical shape, or mental shape.



DinoFett said:

Remember these are QOL systems/items for over the next 15 years, Anything can change in that time. But I will believe in it for now. Nintendo QOL!



kingc8 said:

What Nintendo did, after Wii, was make a system that would appeal to the core gamers again, essentially a gamecube 2.

It is dying, horribly.

Nintendo used to be about making products for everyone, for the mainstream. Wii was a return to that idea. QOL may well be a return to that idea.

Overweight neck-beards in their mother's basement obviously don't care about their quality of life, Q.E.D.



BertoFlyingFox said:

Please dont tell me they're going to use another stupid name to market something.....dont call it QOL because it feels like it should be pronounced "coal" which isnt good for your health.

Someone needs to get their naming guy the hell out of the cool kids section in Akihabara and their UI designers need to be put there, instead of a padded white cell thinking up another unfun/sterile design for a gaming console.



Darknyht said:

This isn't targeting the hardcore gamer crowd, it's targeting their moms. With Touch Generation, my 50+ old mother purchased a DS and a Wii so that she could buy the following all those Touch Generation games we scoff at.

Currently it all sits in a corner collecting dust, but Nintendo got two system purchases and multiple game purchases out of it. That is what they need to tap into again, without damaging the gaming brand of Wii U and 3DS.



chiefeagle02 said:

The YouTube Channel "Extra Credits" did a few videos on the concept of Gamification, in that you're making the pursuit of health and education like one big video game (which basically sounds like what Nintendo is aiming for with the QOL platform). Here is one video which I would recommend: Overall, I am interested in the QOL platform. Brain Age was my first DS game and I still do Wii Fit Plus. I'm curious to see what else Nintendo will do with this concept of gamification.



kingc8 said:


Yeesh.. damaging the Wii U brand.. what's the brand worth at this point?

Nintendo won't be using the Wii brand again.. and I get the feeling the DS brand has run it's course. Maybe a return to the Gameboy brand perhaps?

I just think calling the next device the 4DS is just gonna wash over people at this point.. again a brand that's probably tapped out for now.



Sceptic said:

Fitness, Gamification or 'QOL' is another area after the casual market where they (again) will find themselves up against established and high quality market players and brands. Their QOL venture will probably make the WiiU look like a blazing success in comparison.

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