Nintendo adds high-end Game Boy to lineup

Nintendo of America introduced Tuesday a new Game Boy handheld targeted at adult gamers: The Game Boy Advance SP, a system with a flip-top design, rechargeable battery and lighting features intended to extend its portability.

The new Game Boy's changes are almost entirely aesthetic. Beneath the hood, it's the same Game Boy Advance system that has sold more than 11 million units in North America since its launch, and it will run all previously released games. But with the sleek new look -- the unit will debut in metallic cobalt and platinum -- Nintendo hopes to lure business travelers, college students and other players willing to pay a bit more for appearance.

In North America, the Game Boy Advance SP will be released March 23 with a retail price of US$99.95, around US$30 higher than the Game Boy Advance's price tag. Japan will get the new system first, on Feb. 14, while Australia and Europe will be launched in late March.

The screen is a 2.9-inch LCD (liquid crystal display), identical to the Game Boy Advance's, but the unit itself will be one of the smallest gaming handhelds available, with a depth of around 1 inch and a size of 3.33 inches by 3.23 inches (2.54 by 8.46 by 8.2 cm). The system weighs around 5 ounces (141.75 grams).

One major change in the system is its rechargeable lithium-ion battery, which Nintendo officials estimate will handle 18 hours of continuous playing with the unit's light off, or 10 with it on. Recharging takes three hours.

Also new is the system's front lighting, intended to make the system useable both in dark rooms and bright sunlight.

Game Boy Advance SP will complement, not replace, the Game Boy Advance, according to a company spokeswoman, who said Nintendo will continue producing the Game Boy Advance and hold its retail price at US$69.95.

In 2002, approximately 30 percent of Nintendo's U.S. hardware sales came from the Game Boy Advance, officials said.

One analyst attending the launch event said the rechargeable battery and lighting improvements are good ones, and should help Nintendo tap new audiences for its handhelds.

"It doesn't look revolutionary, but it's a nice evolutionary improvement, the kind of thing you expect to see after a product has been on the market for a while," said Sean McGowan, managing direct of equity research for Gerard Klauer Mattison's consumer group, in New York.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Stacy Cowley

PC World
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?