Nintendo has been on an upward trajectory ever since the release of the Nintendo Switch, leaving many to wonder what is next for 129-year-old company. Fortunately for those wondering, much was answered at the GeekWire Summit a few days ago, specifically answered by the prominent president and COO of Nintendo of America, Reggie Fils-Aime. While not announcing any new projects, he gave significant insight into what is occurring within the gaming giant. From touching upon what Nintendo aims to be as a company, to the focus that the company has had on leveraging their intellectual property, to what the competitors are for the company in his eyes, to what was learned from the Wii U, and more.
Opening his appearance was the explanation of Nintendo’s viewpoint that they are an entertainment company, focused on “making our consumers smile”. He continued by delving into details on how this is done by leveraging their intellectual property through various forms, the first being outside of gaming, such as with deals with amusement parks, film studios, and even cereal companies. Next is Nintendo’s relatively recently launched mobile business with titles such as the incredibly successful Super Mario Run, Fire Emblem Heroes, and the recently released Dragalia Lost. Finally, he spoke on the dedicated console side of the video game business, the primary way they engage with consumers such as with the Nintendo Switch and 3DS. These are all blanketed by the idea of using intellectual property in the effort to drive forward an “entertainment positioning”.
Reggie Fils-Aime later moved onto the topic of Nintendo Switch Online, specifically what separates them from their competitors. From there, someone asked the question, “Do you see Microsoft and Sony as your primary competitors?” The president of Nintendo of America’s answer started with “I don’t.”
Think of it this way. We all have 24 hours a day, 1440 minutes a day. We eat, we sleep, we go to work or we go to school. All of the rest of that time is entertainment time. That’s what I compete for, minute by minute and that time you spend surfing the web, watching a movie, watching a telecast of a conference. That’s all entertainment time we’re competing for minute by minute. My competitive set is much bigger than my direct competitors in Sony and Microsoft. I compete for time. When I do that, I have to be creative and innovative in order to win that battle for time.
Later on in the conference, even the topics of augmented and virtual reality were brought up, as it is something the company has dabbled with in the past in multiple forms. While Reggie mentioned the fact that they have both been touched on with the 3DS AR features and the Virtual Boy respectively, he did state “it’s technology that we’re looking at but, in the end it has to be fun”.
You can watch the entire video of Nintendo of America’s president and COO, Reggie Fils-Aime, at the GeekWire Summit here.