A proprietary device never before seen for the Game Boy Color is said to have given Nintendo’s handheld a number of additional features, including web browsing, email options, and the ability to send selfies with the Game Camera. Boy. The device, reportedly called Page Boy, was featured in a new episode of DidYouKnowGaming, hosted by Liam Robertson. In the video, Robertson reveals that the ambitious project was started by Eddie Gill, the founder of Source Research and Development and creator of Workboy. The Workboy was a similarly canceled device for the original Game Boy, which would have given the system an address book, world clock, the ability to perform currency conversions, and more.
According to Robertson, Gill’s idea for the Workboy inspired him to keep trying to create a similar device. Together with their brother Christopher, they formed a group called Wizard. Interestingly enough, the system would not have used wi-fi, but rather radio waves, which is similar to how pagers worked at the same time (hence the name). To get a feel for Nintendo, Gill enlisted the help of Frank Ballouz, a former Nintendo executive who oversaw the production of the Workboy. In 1999, Wizard presented the idea to Nintendo with detailed information on the technology, as well as physical models of what it would look like, commissioned from a company called Sirius Modelmaking.
According to the presentation (obtained by Robertson), Page Boy would have included a search engine specifically for the device, called “Ask Mario”. While users waited for search results, Mario would talk to them and even whistle the World 1-1 theme of Super Mario Bros.! The device would even feature something called “Game Boy TV,” where Nintendo could make new announcements about upcoming games, which Robertson likens to an early version of the Nintendo Direct presentations.
The device would have cost $ 50. Nintendo studied the concept for three years, before closing the door in 2002. While Nintendo was fascinated by the concept, the technology was said to have been limited to North America, leaving out users in Japan and Europe. The company felt that this cost the article much of its appeal, which was being able to communicate with other Game Boy users around the world. The concept was clearly ahead of its time, and it could have been a very interesting device if it had hit the market!
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