Nintendo plans to unveil new Cube peripheral at E3

The Cube's belated answer to EyeToy prepares to take a bow.

The DS handheld will not be the only new hardware on show at Nintendo's E3 conference, according to a Japanese newspaper which this week reported that the company has a new Cube peripheral to unveil.

Kyoto Shimbun - a newspaper based, as the name suggests, in Nintendo's home city of Kyoto - cites official confirmation from the platform holder's Japanese public relations office regarding the appearance of new hardware at the trade show which will add new functionality to the Cube.

The company likened the new peripheral to Sony's EyeToy device - a product which Nintendo executives seem to view as an embarrassing coup for Sony, and a threatening move into a product sector which has traditionally been Nintendo's own.

Speculation over the nature of the peripheral is likely to be rife in the run up to next month's show, as is the already simmering speculation that Nintendo may use this year's show as a platform to launch its online gaming ambitions for the Cube - despite the fact that the company's official line on online console gaming remains an incredibly cautious one.

The suggestion that Nintendo would launch new Cube peripherals in the near future first emerged earlier this year when the company reaffirmed its commitment to the GameCube as a platform for new hardware and software products. However, that announcement was overshadowed by the flood of coverage which misinterpreted the comments from company president Satoru Iwata as implying that the company was bowing out of the next generation console race in favour of sticking with the Cube in the long term.

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