The Phonetendo takes an unmodified ACN videophone, and by inserting an SD memory card, turns it into a proof-of-concept video game platform.
ACN operates by selling phone service contracts; these include the physical phone hardware. Without ACN’s services (which have often been called disappointing), these devices are essentially garbage.
Through a combination of reverse engineering by the artist and online research, this device has been sufficiently dissected to permit its use as a game platform complete use of the phone’s interactivity – speakerphone, handset, video, and the keypad.
By building an SD card with specific characteristics, it appears to the phone to be a diagnostic tool. The SD card can then intervene in the phone’s usual startup procedure and instead run the game software. This transforms the phone into a game platform, and the SD card into a game cartridge.
The proof-of-concept game is actually not a game at all; it is intended to simulate the soul-destroying employment of an office administrator. It mimics the look and feel of a game but fails to be enjoyable. Instead it is a never-ending repetition of responding to robocalls, greeting coworkers, and finding an ever-errant stapler. (This is a work in progress.)
Free Resources Used