Nintendo president, Satoru Iwata loves his MacBook and his iPhone, and firmly believes Nintendo and Apple aren't competitors (they appeal to different customers), and any talk of it makes him uncomfortable.

Yet Apple is most assuredly aiming at gaming (even if John Carmack thinks it's between clenched teeth), especially with the funner iPod touch ever, and its game-heavy marketing.

With Nintendo profits down 52% for the first half of the year, and Apple selling record numbers of iPhones and reporting 100,000 apps and 2,000,000,000 downloads (with games weighed heavily among them).

Even with a dedicated gaming device like the DS (and perhaps a new platform on the way next year?), and a high-profile set of first-party properties like Mario, Metroid, Zelda, Pokémon, etc. those are tough numbers to look at. And Nintendo isn't kidding themselves about that:

"If we can't make clear why customers pay a lot of money to play games on Nintendo hardware and Nintendo software and differentiate ourselves from games on the mobile phone or iPhone, then our future is dark."

Still, there are no plans for a WiiPhone (no matter how cool that might sound to us!), though an Amazon Kindle-like model, where the end-user doesn't see any of the cell network bills, does appeal to Iwata.

Likewise, we can't hold our breath for even older 1st party GameBoy titles to show up on the iPhone either. At least not anytime soon.

[Wall Street Journal -- thanks to everyone who sent this in!]