Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) owners rejoice! The NES will soon get a new release as Google has announced that the Google Maps 8-Bit for NES will soon be available on the Google Store. With the release of the Google Maps 8-Bit for NES, Google is paying tribute to legendary old school technology and it’s a refreshing new take on the advanced Google Maps system.
Google says in a post on the Google Latitude Longitude blog, the official blog for the Google Maps and Google Earth teams, that they constantly introduce cutting-edge technology to Google Maps and Google Earth. However, they say that in their “pursuit of new digital frontiers,” they have recognized “that we may have left behind a large number of users who couldn’t access Google Maps on their classic hardware.”
“Surprisingly, the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) was unsupported, despite its tremendous popularity with over 60 million units sold worldwide,” Google’s Tatsuo Nomura wrote.
“Our engineering team in Japan understood the importance of maps on retro game systems. With the power of Google’s immense data centers, and support from Nintendo and Square Enix, we were able to overcome the technical and design hurdles of developing 8-bit maps. Today, we’re excited to announce the result: a version of Google Maps for NES, with beautiful low-res graphics, simple and intuitive controls, and a timeless soundtrack,” he added.
Ken Tokusei, a Google product management director, said in a video announcing the new product that Google has long provided services for desktops and mobile devices like smartphones and tablets. “But we’ve long neglected one of the most popular computer systems ever sold,” he said, introducing the Google Maps 8-Bit for NES, saying it’s their first product for the NES.
Google also marks a milestone as the Google Maps 8-Bit For NES will be the first cartridge to be released for the NES in 18 years.
The Google Maps 8-Bit For NES cartridge is like an ordinary NES cartridge, but with the addition of an Ethernet for connecting to the Internet. It’s totally compatible with the cartridge system of the NES. As demonstrated by the video below, you can also easily fix bugs by blowing on the cartridge, just like the old days.
Watch the video below for the features of the Google Maps 8-Bit For NES. It’s not available now, but you can try it out in your browser by going to Google Maps and then clicking the “Quest” button.
And oh, happy April Fools’ Day!
Google has long been releasing witty products during April Fools’ Day. Here’s one from last year:
And here’s one from 2010:
Source: Google Lat Long Blog