During their recent third-quarter earnings briefing, Nintendo confirmed that they are indeed uniting their home console and portable hardware development groups into a single division, with the goal being to increase interoperability between Nintendo devices.
Nintendo president, Satoru Iwata, provided a few general specifics, including that future Nintendo hardware will share operating systems, built-in software and software development methods across multiple devices. This will make development easier and help avoid software shortages at launch.
The other effect it will have, Iwata said at an earnings Q&A session, is that it will allow Nintendo to develop more platforms than they are now.
“What we are saying is that we would like to integrate software development methods, operating systems, and built-in software and software assets for each platform so that we can use them across different machines,” Iwata explained to Q&A attendees. “This means that if we manage to integrate our platforms successfully, we may in fact be able to make more platforms.”
He elaborated: “At the moment, we only have our current handheld devices and home consoles because if we tried to make more platforms, our development resources would be spread too thinly. The more we can share software across different platforms, the more development resources will be left for something else.”
Iwata did not elaborate further as to just what kinds of additional devices Nintendo have in mind for the future, but did mention that Nintendo do not believe that dedicated gaming platforms will die out, and that the company is “determined to create a future where they will not”.