The SmartBoy Lets You Play Old Game Boy Cartridges on Your Phone

By Matt Wales on at

Ever looked at your smartphone and wished, deep in your heart of hearts, that it was really a Game Boy instead? No, me neither, but that hasn't stopped hardware manufacture Hyperkin from releasing a peripheral that turns your smartphone into a hideous, but also weirdly charming, Frankenstein's monster of a retro gaming device.

The SmartBoy, as we'll be referring to the peripheral from now on (because that's its name), is essentially the bottom half of a classic 1989 Game Boy, complete with chunky red buttons and a nice big d-pad. The top half of the device, meanwhile, doesn't exist because that's where your Android-powered smartphone slots in, acting as the missing screen.

Of course, the world of smartphone gaming isn't exactly short on chunky, and ultimately frivolous retro-style peripherals. What sets the SmartBoy apart is that it features a slot designed specifically to accept your old Game Boy and Game Boy Color cartridges. Just pop one in and your phone will load up the emulator required to play it. Hyperkin also notes that the device is compatible with other apps and games, including Game Boy Advance apps, that can be acquired through Google Play.

Hyperkin's SmartBoy, due this September, will set you back £59.99, and the retro enthusiast and ridiculous gimmick lover in me does think it looks kind of neat. And it scores at least one point over the original Game Boy: you won't need to strain your eyes nearly so much to play your classic games on a nice, vibrant 2017 screen.