One announcement that flew under the radar last week at E3 was that of Hyperkin’s new Smart Boy peripheral. Known for its SupaBoy and RetroN 5 consoles, Hyperkin is no stranger to retro gaming hardware. The Smart Boy is a bit of a departure however, promising the ability to use your smartphone – android only for the time being – as an emulator for actual cartridge games.
The Smart Boy hardware looks a bit like a GameBoy missing its top half. The unit is split down the middle, allowing you to insert an android smartphone that will be used as a GameBoy hardware emulator. There are also physical buttons on the unit that function through the phone’s USB connector.
Since the Smart Boy relies on an emulator within the smartphone to play games, android phones are the only option at this time. Although Hyperkin would presumably like to support the iPhone – the initial April Fool’s Day joke announcement was for iPhone – the App Store currently does not allow emulators, thus a workaround would have to be found before manufacturing could commit to an iPhone unit.
The Smart Boy in its current form can be pre-ordered from Hyperkin’s website for $59.99 and will ship out on December 1st, 2016.