Transform Your Samsung into a Game Boy

Tia Winter | 19 June 2017

While smartphones like Samsung’s Galaxy S8 are all the rage, there was a time when mobile gaming devices like the cult classic Nintendo Game Boy held centre stage. The Game Boy has been one of history’s most successful mobile consoles, and although many companies have sought to recreate it, so far nothing has beaten the original design.

That is, until Korean-based tech giant Samsung got involved. Samsung has been looking to gain an upper hand in the war of the smartphones and beat its competition; namely, Apple’s iPhone. Now, thanks to an ingenious new device, any owner of a Samsung smartphone can experience Game Boy gaming in all its former glory, transporting millions of fans back to the 90’s.

The Korean technology brand recently revealed a new add-on for its smartphones, which has been licensed through Los Angeles firm Hyperkin. Hyperkin’s SmartBoy is an add-on device specifically designed for Android, which effectively transforms Samsung smartphones into retro Game Boys – complete with an old-fashioned cartridge slot for games.

Authentic Game Boy Action

Of course, it is possible to find Android-based video game simulators to recreate the classic Game Boy games for mobile play, but the SmartBoy offers authentic 90’s-style gaming action through the use of a simple add-on, which even makes users’ smartphones look like the iconic mobile console.

The SmartBoy is capable of running both Game Boy Colour and Game Boy Original game cartridges, and is also compatible with Game Boy Advance apps and other select apps and mobile games from Google Play. Some past favourites from the end of the 20th century included Pokémon, Mario Kart, Tetris, and Donkey Kong, all of which are available through Game Boy Advance.

Hyperkin has noted that the SmartBoy was created for today’s generation of Samsung smartphones that feature USB Type-C ports. Ultimately, this means that any of Samsung’s modern smartphones will be compatible with the add-on, including its most recent releases: the Samsung Galaxy S8, and the Samsung Galaxy J3. Samsung devices have been hugely popular with those who love gaming on the go, and are a favourite with those who love high quality casino games and just about any other multi-media for mobile. The SmartBoy will only serve to make them even more appealing to their already enormous customer base.

Samsung Smartphone Add-On Set To Hit Shelves

Interestingly, the SmartBoy began as something of a joke when Hyperkin announced the idea as an April Fool’s prank to its customers last year. However, the positive feedback was enough to convince the company to put the idea into action, and the device has now been about two years in the making according to its lead designer Chris Gallizzi.

The SmartBoy is set to hit shelves later during 2017, and has already been granted an official license from Samsung as an approved add-on for its smartphone models. The device will come with a price tag of about NZ$92 (US$67), and is compatible with any phone screen size from 5.2 to 6 inches. It does not require batteries, and offers classic tactile buttons just like its retro predecessor.

It’s currently also only set to be released in the US and Korea, although with enough positive support from countries like New Zealand, this might soon change. Retro style tech has become hugely popular recently, with everything from record players to radios being re-released. It looks like the SmartBoy has captured the markets attention at just the right time, and is set to be a huge hit.