Once upon a time — year ending March 31, 2009, to be precise — Nintendo managed to post a profit of 555.2 billion yen. Those days feel like a lifetime away now, what with the Wii passing into memory and its successor — the Wii U — struggling to sell in meaningful quantities.
Given Nintendo's current position compared to where it was a couple of years ago, its unsurprising that many "industry experts" are calling for the company to abandon its hardware-focused approach and bring its impressive portfolio of titles to smartphones and tablets, arguably the "growth sector" at present.
One Japanese analyst has even gone as far as to predict that if Nintendo was to take such action, it would see its profits increase "2 or 3 times" over.
However, Nintendo continues to resist such claims, and in response has said:
Performance is temporarily getting better, you can’t get a true feel for Mario on smartphone or tablet, and this would also lead to a decrease in brand value over the long term.
We certainly agree there — one of the biggest issues with touchscreen-only devices is a lack of precise control; we simply can't imagine playing a Mario title on a device which lacks physical inputs. Nintendo would have to simplify the controls, which will surely result in a more shallow experience overall.
Whatever your perspective on this matter, it's a debate which is set to run and run until Nintendo can turn its fortunes around or the mobile sector collapses.