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Nintendo presses snooze button on planned sleep-tracking device

Nintendo is halting plans to release a sleep and health-tracking “Quality of Life” device, which it had promised would place a trademark fun spin on the sector.

During its earnings call earlier in this week, the firm said it lacked conviction in the non-wearable device as a viable consumer product.

New president Tatsumi Kimishima says the March 2016 release is now off the (bedside) table, but Nintendo will continue research in the field.

In remarks translated by Wired, Kimishima said: “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. 

“We no longer have any plans to release it by the end of March 2016. On the other hand, 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.”

See also: Nintendo NX: Things we’d like to see

Nintendo’s plans first announced in October 2014 and aimed to help visualise sleep and fatigue data with a device that would sense whether users were asleep. It was scheduled to be co-developed with RedMed, a company that makes devices assisting with sleep disorders.

At the time, the late Satoru Iwata said: “By using our know-how in gaming… to analyse sleep and fatigue, we can create something fun.”

Kiminshima’s comments suggest Nintendo may revisit the device at some stage, but for now the focus seems to be on the forthcoming NX and the entry into mobile gaming.

Of course Nintendo is no newcomer to the health and fitness sector
with the Wii Fit platform regarded as a pioneer in a now-crowded sector.

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