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Nokia Takes on Nintendo

Boot Camp feature for Friday, May 16, 2003

Nokia takes on Nintendo. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. When it comes to handheld game machines, Nintendo has had a stranglehold on the market for years with its Game Boy and Game Boy Advance devices. But the top cell phone maker in the world, Nokia, hopes to take some of that business away with a new phone/gaming device that will be out in early October. It is called N-Gage. General manager Nada Usina says the 300 dollar device will feature a GSM phone... that can play games over a GPRS network... or head to head games using short range Bluetooth wireless technology. Given the pricing and cell phone capability... N-Gage is aimed at an older age group than the Game Boy...

"The N-Gage is definitely creating a new category in the sense that it is a gaming device, an MP3 player and a mobile phone. We're very much believers that this is going to be creating an exciting new platform for developers to work on and consumers to play on."

Whether or not it can make a dent in Nintendo remains to be seen. On the Game Boy Advance front, the folks behind PocketPC Films have announced they'll be coming out with an add-on for playing videos and music on the popular handheld. CEO Darrell Griffin says Pocket Pix will be a cartridge that includes a processor and a memory card slot...

"And then that cartridge allows the Game Boy screen to play feature films or animation or whatever."

Pricing should be in the seventy dollar range. You can find more information at filminhand.com. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.