One of the oldest and most iconic companies in the gaming industry, Atari, has claimed that it wants to get involved in the hardware side of gaming once again - however it has ruled out any suggestions that it's set to release a new console.
The last major hardware released by the company was the doomed to failure Atari Jaguar, the 64-bit flop which launched back in 1993 and failed to ignite any real consumer interest, but that hasn't stopped the freshly invigorated company planning some kind of return to the hardware space.
In an interview with gaming website GamesBeat, Atari CEO Frederic Chesnais suggested what could be on the cards as the company looks to move forward outside the realm of just software...
It's more than a software brand... it's a hardware brand.I don't want to say it's a hardware brand first and foremost, but it is also a hardware brand. So we are carefully looking at... you know... we have a replica of the initial Atari 2600, but that is also something that we want to carefully announce in the course of the next few years, which is that with new licensing with the right partners we build the brand not only in the software space but also in the hardware space.
I'm not talking about a new console... but, like, a watch. A gamified watch. It's not what we are going to do, but think about [something like] that. Like a new type of watch is something we 'could do.' A watch, branded, where you don't have an 'ordinary watch.'
To give you another idea of something we could do, you have a jacket. We have a plug-in so you can power your iPhone or Android. You had a solar chip on your shoulder so that you power... so that you never run out of batteries. Things like this. Would you buy an Atari watch? Would you buy an Atari Jacket that you could plug and repower your iPhone or whatever device you are using? I think you would... I think you would.
Maybe he's misjudging the popularity of Atari among the modern consumer here, but at least he's thinking outside the box for the company he acquired a major portion of last year following 13 years of association with the company up to 2007.
So what do you think? Would you buy an Atari game watch or a solar powered future-retro jacket bearing the company's insignia?