Nintendo patents Game Boy smartphone case - Hardware

Nintendo Has Patented a Functional GameBoy Case For Smartphones

The flip-open case is similar to many others available for smart phones today - with the major difference being the buttons and screen opening. A patent uncovered by Siliconera suggests that Nintendo may be working on the solution: a smartphone case that turns your phone into a Game Boy.

Does this sound like a case you'd get? Hopefully, these will be offered free with the case, but it wouldn't be wholly surprising if Nintendo tried to charge £9.99 per game or only supported Kirby's Dream Land. This includes physical A and B buttons, a directional pad and a cut out to display the device's screen where the screen of a regular Game Boy would be.

According to the patent, which was unearthed by technology blog Siliconera, the physical buttons on the front of the case are created to interact with a touchscreen when the case is clasped over a smartphone. While the case itself would be cool for retro gaming fans, another bit of good news is that this patent should mean Game Boy games are on the mobile roadmap for Nintendo. There is also a cutout for the front-facing camera.

Nintendo Has Patented a Functional GameBoy Case For Smartphones
Nintendo wants to turn smartphones into Game Boys

The idea seems to be that players could play Gameboy games officially on their phone, with a backlit screen, without having to worry about accidentally hitting the wrong point on a touchscreen or failing to hit the right input. Or has Nintendo found a size that works for every phone now available? Both titles are utterly addictive, and welcome additions to the Nintendo game library.

As you can see in the images, the patent hints at a concept for a folio smartphone case. "Pokemon Go" was a global phenomenon when it launched in July 2016 and "Fire Emblem Heroes" has grossed more than $400 million worldwide since its launch in February 2017.

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