Atari is "back in the hardware" business, just as current Atari CEO, Frederic Chesnais said last month at E3 to VentureBeat. Today, the company announced the new Ataribox console, a device that plans on delivering nostalgia and "current content" simultaneously.
In an email to fans, Atari explained, "our objective is to create something new, that stays true to our heritage, while appealing to both old and new fans of Atari." Like Nintendo's NES Classic, which repackaged the company's classic video game console and games in a modern, miniaturized package, the Ataribox is a modern device inspired by the company's classic Atari 2600 console.
Unlike the NES Classic, the Ataribox won't just be a straight shrink job of the original 2600, but rather a redesigned console. However, the new Ataribox will features some design elements of the 70s console such as the wood paneling, and ridged lines, though it ditches the boxiness of the 2600 for a more streamlined look that's kind of like a thin blu-ray player.
The Ataribox will also support a micro SD card, a HDMI port, and four USB ports, and will come in two variants: one with wood panels and a red and black version.
Atari didn't reveal what games will be playable on the Ataribox other than that will offer classic games and "current content." Whether that means the Ataribox will support new downloadable titles, or not is unclear. Likewise, there is no release date or pricing information, something Atari addresses in its email.
"We know you are hungry for more details; on specs, games, pricing, timing," writes Atari. "We're not teasing you intentionally; we want to get this right, so we've opted to share things step by step as we bring this to life, and to listen closely to the Atari community feedback as we do so."
How long until we see a Stranger Things, Ataribox cross-promotion?