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Nintendo 2DS' two screens are one single screen covered by plastic

Apr 27, 2011
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Apparently, to reduce cost, Nintendo has opted for a single touch screen to create the two screen display in the new 2DS.

USGamer said:
Curiously, the 2DS is even more of a tablet-style system than it appears at first glance, as it actually features a single large screen in its center, not two separate ones. As one of their cost-cutting design measures, Nintendo reduced the number of screens in the system from two to one, and the appearance of separate screens is merely simulated by the way the case masks out the extraneous portions. This means the entire screen is by necessity a touchscreen, with the upper screen protected by a layer of plastic that sits above it. While this makes no difference for the system's normal functions -- after all, neither the system's firmware or its software would recognize the hidden, inactive zones of the screen or the upper portion's touch capabilities, even if you exposed those portions -- I'm curious to see what hardware modders manage to do with the system.

http://www.usgamer.net/articles/oh-so-thats-nintendos-next-move

I find this decision very odd. Not that they want to cut costs, but that they aren't taking advantage of the lack of 3D and a large touch screen.

Here's my mockup of what they could be doing:



3DS games would still fully functional, but developers have an option to create additional features for the 2DS system, like the Art Academy example above. Also, 2DS eShop apps would be a nice way to compete with the tablet market on the side.

What is funny though, is that this is the first thing I thought of when I saw the system, and after learning this news, I am now shocked they didn't go this direction.

I think it's a huge oversight. The screen is already there, why not?
 

Tuck

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Feb 23, 2011
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The system is not meant to add features or functionality. Its literally meant to be a cheap 3DS without the 3D. So its no surprise that this is a cost cutting effort and nothing more.

Strange. I wonder if this will eventually lead to a bunch of exclusive 2DS games that have top touchscreen interactivity.

No.
 

yami4ct

Member
Aug 6, 2009
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Strange. I wonder if this will eventually lead to a bunch of exclusive 2DS games that have top touchscreen interactivity.

Nope. Touchscreen on top is covered in plastic. It exists, but not functional. Only reason they do that is cost saving. Not enabling it is a bit weird, but I guess they don't want to split the market in more awkward ways than they're doing it. Leave it as a form change, not a functional shift. Same reason we still don't have a 3DS with 2-sticks.
 

Kokonoe

Banned
Dec 2, 2011
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That mockup (if clamshell isn't an option) is definitely better than what they're doing currently.
 

ToastyFrog

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Nov 21, 2004
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Strange. I wonder if this will eventually lead to a bunch of exclusive 2DS games that have top touchscreen interactivity.

They can't. The hardware is designed with a hard plastic layer over the upper screen to moot its functionality.

jooey has the right answer. We'll have to settle for the mockup above as a glimpse of what might have been in an alternate reality where "hey that's neat" wins out over "let's stay in business plz."

Edit: Craig Harris says the touchscreen feature is a separately layer added over the screen, not a feature of the screen itself, so maybe the whole thing isn't touch-capable. I was going based on the NOA reps' response to whether the top was touch-capable, which was roughly, "Well, yeah, don't see why it wouldn't be."
 

yami4ct

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Aug 6, 2009
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That mockup (if clamshell isn't an option) is definitely better than what they're doing currently.

I don't really agree. One of the big problems I see with that mockup is in the interface. The way the two separate-screen interfaces just sit on top each other with no boarder would be murder on the eyes. Way too awkward. Also, as mentioned, the idea of black bars on the bottom screen would be off-putting to mass audiences.
 

Duxxy3

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Nov 30, 2007
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Using different sized screens was just a terrible idea in the first place.
 

acm2000

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Jun 18, 2007
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Strange. I wonder if this will eventually lead to a bunch of exclusive 2DS games that have top touchscreen interactivity.

top screen is covered so no touch

they shouldved removed the plastic, then have black bars for 3ds games, and enable the full screen for browser and other stuff
 

SatoAilDarko

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Mar 3, 2013
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Not like Nintendo hasn't done that before with their handhelds. DSi had more functions when compared to the DS lite and DS.

And except for a few retail games like Korg-DS-10 Plus no one took average of the greater processing power and 4x the ram in the DSi over the regular DS.
 

yami4ct

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Aug 6, 2009
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At 130 I wonder how much of a profit they're making.

They are doing severe, severe cost cutting here. Mono speaker, no clamshell meaning way less molded plastic parts, 1 screen, no expensive parallax 3D screen. I expect they're making a profit, but at that big of a cost cut they likely will make more on the other units.
 

ElFly

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Sep 3, 2006
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Has this been confirmed? I assumed they just changed the original 3DS production lines just a little and bam, 2DS. Like, just buying the same screens just without the 3D polarizing parts.
 

BigDug13

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Dec 20, 2006
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I really don't see how people think this kind of thing would split the user base.

It wouldn't as long as no games whatsoever took advantage of having the entire screen touchable. As long as it was limited to just browser and things like that, they could do it. As soon as you make a single game that requires it, you have now fragmented your 3DS userbase.
 

BronsonLee

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Oct 30, 2011
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...Goddamnit

So what you're telling me is there's a ton of unused screen space there?

At this rate I might as well make a 2DS mold for my tablet too :p
 
Apr 27, 2011
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It wouldn't as long as no games whatsoever took advantage of having the entire screen touchable. As long as it was limited to just browser and things like that, they could do it. As soon as you make a single game that requires it, you have now fragmented your 3DS userbase.

Even if some games have optional features, that still doesn't split it. Required is the word.
 

Busaiku

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Apr 5, 2006
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They are doing severe, severe cost cutting here. Mono speaker, no clamshell meaning way less molded plastic parts, 1 screen, no expensive parallax 3D screen. I expect they're making a profit, but at that big of a cost cut they likely will make more on the other units.

It's not that gigantic a reduction.
$40 over the 3DS, which they are already profiting on, and minus all the extra stuff, they'll probably make similar amounts.
 

yami4ct

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Aug 6, 2009
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It's not that gigantic a reduction.
$40 over the 3DS, which they are already profiting on, and minus all the extra stuff, they'll probably make similar amounts.

$40 is a pretty significant cut. I'm not sure if these changes will outweigh that, but we'll see when we inevitably get a teardown. We all know Nintendo will make a ton on these whether or not the margin is a big as the other units.