Nintendo has decided to put the brakes on plans to launch a sleep tracking monitor it hoped to launch this year having first released details of the project in 2014.
Confirmation of its demise was revealed during a Q&A session in a briefing with the company's investors. Nintendo president Tatsumi Kimishima, who replaced the iconic Satoru Iwata who sadly passed away last year, said there were no more plans to release the device at the end of March 2016 as had been planned.
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"In regards to the Quality of Life (device), which was not mentioned in any of today's questions, we do not have the conviction that the sleep-and-fatigue-themed (device) can enter the phase of actually becoming a product," Kimishima said in a translation of the briefing.
While a sleep tracker might not be on the horizon, Kimishima did not rule out exploring the area of health in the future.
"We still believe there are things we can do in the general category of Quality of Life, and we will continue to study the possibility of expanding into this field," he said.
Set to be part of the Japanese gaming giant's Quality of Life (QOL) initiative, the non wearable sleep monitor was designed to sit on your bedside cabinet and use radio frequencies to measure breathing, movement and heart rate; with the analysis taking place in the cloud. Basically, it was going to work a lot like the Withings Aura and a host of other sleep monitoring devices that are already available.
When Iwata first talked about the project in an earnings call back in 2014, he claimed Nintendo would use its know-how in gaming to analyse sleep and fatigue to create something fun.
This isn't the first time Nintendo has played with the idea of bringing health and gaming closer together. The Wii Fit was a pretty big deal and sold in its bucketloads. At the other end of the spectrum though, there were things like the Wii Vitality sensor that pulled biometric data into game design. The Ninty fanboys and girls didn't like that idea so much.
Here's hoping the decision to back away from smart home devices will let Nintendo focus on what it does best and that's gaming. Well, if you forget the Wii U exists that is.
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