The Impact of Ouya

So now Ouya has its first announcement of exclusive content.  This is pretty interesting and yes, I’m going to buy one, I feel almost morally obligated as . . . er, well me.

So let’s assume they can somehow turn $5 million into a good functioning game console running Android.  I figure it’s going to happen between the enthusiasm, the public, the money, and the fact they’re being watched like a hawk by the people who provided $5 million.  My guess is the worse the Ouya is going to be is mediocre.

So based on that assumption, what’s going to happen during and after release to everyone else?


  • Developers are going to have to consider it’s role in their products.  For Android game developers it’s going to affect some development plans (screen size, controls), but hey it’s something else to put things out on.  For non-Android developers, then the question comes up “do you support it?”
  • I expect people to have big plans for the device, but some will be disappointed in the results their games get simply due to the randomness of fate.  Expect some “sales haters” when the launch happens.
  • The Ouya could become an excellent educational tool/device for training and education.  It’s cheap, hackable, and runs Android.


  • This is a weird one.  Microsoft makes a great product with XBox, and the Ouya, no matter how good it is, may not be as polished.  At the same time this provides a less-gated, more diverse competitor appealing to a tech crowd.  I think they may ignore it for awhile, but I’m sure they’re curious.
  • Microsoft should be OK in the end as they’re evolving a broad device.


  • Nintendo is still king of the oddball controllers and the Ouya can’t beat that – yet.  But with a hackable and open device, a lot CAN be done.  It won’t be an issue at first, but who knows what will be done (say, any Android phone as an equivalent of a Wii U controller?)
  • Nintendo has a dedicated oddball and property space, so I actually imagine they’ll do OK.


  • Look, at some point they’ll have to talk gaming device.  This may just push them into something “gamesque,” even if it’s a variant on Apple TV with some games and controls.  By now I don’t think they can – or want to -ignore it.

Maker Culture:

  • Will go freaking insane for this.  Expect controllers (as noted), hacks, additions, and things involving Arduino you can’t imagine.


  • I imagine they’ll want to sell this thing and will go out of their way to do so.
  • This could actually be good for their continued expansion and diversification if they’re able to get in perhiperals and other devices.  May give them more geek cred.


  • Is smiling.

– Steven Savage

Steven Savage is a Geek 2.0 writer, speaker, blogger, and job coach for professional and potentially professional geeks, fans, and otaku. He can be reached at