Nintendo’s next console, codenamed the NX, will use cartridges instead of optical media, according to a recent report.
The Wall Street Journal cites “people familiar with the matter” to claim the NX will use chip-based cartridges. According to the report, a cartridge system warrants consideration due to rising competition in the semiconductor space from the likes of Samsung and Toshiba in developing flash memory that can pack more data at a smaller cost on tiny chips. Furthermore, industry insiders claim cartridges could be the way forward for the company, with its target audience including small children who could damage discs but would find cartridges more durable. The format allows faster loading times, better anti-piracy protection, and can be manufactured faster.
They are “no doubt today’s best format to physically distribute games,” said Atsushi Osanai, a former Sony employee who is now a visiting fellow at Harvard University to The Wall Street Journal.
Interestingly though, the article mention the possibility of a Nintendo NX announcement before Tokyo Game Show which begins on September 15. It would make sense considering the company has stated it would share its plans for the NX this month.
This follows UK-based site Screencritics, translating a statement from Japanese financial website Money-Link which claims that one of Nintendo's suppliers is expecting a big order from Nintendo.
(Also see: Nintendo NX Release Date Revealed)
"Macronix's ROM chips are usually supplied to video game console maker, Nintendo. Although the sales is in off season during the first quarter, the revenue is similar compared with the same period last year. Wu Miin [Chairman of Macronix] suggested that as Nintendo had just announced it will release a new generation console in March next year, and the console will be launched at the same time in Japan, America and Europe, so ROM's sales is expected to increase in the latter half of this year, and it will have a large growth potential."
Macronix has been a longtime partner of Nintendo. It is responsible for the cartridges used in the Nintendo 3DS.