Nintendo's next console could use Google's Android OS, according to Japanese publication Nikkei.

An editorial by Nikkei on Nintendo NX contains alleged "insider" knowledge which suggests that the Wii U's lack of third party support has impacted the approach Nintendo is taking to its next system. According to the source, Nintendo is ready to embrace a more open platform to ensure that games can easily be created or ported to the NX.

If this rumour - and we can't stress that word enough - turns out to be true, it wouldn't be all that unusual in the grand scheme of things. There have been many Android-based "micro" consoles in the past few years - including the Ouya, Mad Catz M.O.J.O., GameStick and Nvidia Shield to name just a few - although none have achieved any kind of lasting commercial success.

One of the advantages Nintendo would get from using Android in its next console would be flexibility - there are rumours that NX will be a hybrid system which bridges the gap between a domestic and portable hardware. Android can be used comfortably in both environments, and supports HDMI output, external storage and Bluetooth controllers, such as joypads, keyboards and mice.

You may recall that we suggested that Nintendo might want to embrace Android a few months back - but in a rather less dramatic fashion than this. Android is a fantastic platform and offers plenty of benefits, but using it to create the next fully-fledged hardware platform would be a massive change for the company.

What do you make of this news? Do you think this rumour could turn out to be true, or will Nintendo stick with its own bespoke OS for its next hardware platform? You know what to do - post a comment below to share your thoughts.

Thanks to Benson for the heads up!

Image credit: Treehouse Blog

[via neogaf.com, nikkei.com, nintendoeverything.com]