Brad Pelo is suddenly in charge of a major Nintendo initiative for the Japanese company's next big console, the Wii U, despite not being an employee at Nintendo. Instead, Pelo is CEO of i.TV -- a "social television and second screen technology company" that's worked with everyone from Entertainment Weekly to Engadget parent company AOL -- and he's the man responsible for Nintendo TVii.
At least he's the man responsible for the company providing the software behind Nintendo TVii (the guy behind the guy, if you will). And his company brings more to the bargaining table than just software -- existing relationships with cable providers and TiVO in the US bolster what i.TV offers Nintendo in a major way. "For Nintendo TVii, there is a mutual benefit in existing relationships we have. Like TiVO for example -- we were the first to bring TiVO to the mobile platform. There's also the benefit of tests that we have done over the years with the cable companies, based on components of our platform," Pelo told Engadget.
But how did this all come about? He said it wasn't long after Nintendo's original Wii U E3 reveal. "The genesis of the experience you're seeing here was really when the Wii U was announced, and it was clear that this is the ideal second screen," Pelo explained. "Ideal," in Pelo's eyes, means a closed system with a "dedicated second screen." In so many words, while he acknowledges that tablets offered by other manufacturers are technically superior, they don't offer the same whole-system approach that Nintendo's Wii U is offering. "You might not think of it as the ideal hardware compared to an iPad if I really had a dedicated second screen. But it is in the living room, and it's persistent. It doesn't even really work outside of the living room -- it's attached to the main viewing service in the home," he explained, referencing the Wii U's tablet-style controller.