Nintendo’s decision to not use multi-touch features, like those implemented successfully in most modern touch screen displays, is not only motivated by the cost to the consumer, but also the functionality of the Wii U experience.
Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Amie, in an interview with Kotaku, defended his company’s decision to leave out multi-touch functionality.
“When we went through the building of this and, given some of the functionality, we thought the single touch was a more appropriate option, especially when you’ve got other button configurations,” Fils-Amie said. “Again, we envision this as a controller that you’re putting in your hands and you’re doing a two-screen experience. The concept of putting it in your lap to do multi-touch for us just feels unwieldy.”
In an interview with Game Trailers TV, Senior Director of Corporate Communications at Nintendo Charlie Sciabatta also explained Nintendo’s goal of a balanced, user-friendly system.
“The new screen in not multi-touch,” Sciabatta said. “If you add something like multi-touch you do up the cost, and so we’re trying to strike the right balance between the robust set of features and capabilities for the hardware, but also make it affordable to people.”
Multi-touch functionality seems to serve a greater purpose for mobile gaming devices, such as the PS Vita, and only time will tell if Nintendo make the right decision to exclude it from its next generation controller.