Intellivision was the first Video game console released by Mattel; production began before that of the Atari 2600. Mattel's aim was not to compete with Atari; but once Atari entered the market, Mattel became more reluctant to enter the market. However, they finally did so, and the Intellivision was test marketed in California in 1979.
The system shipped in 1980 with a price tag of $299 and a pack-in game: Las Vegas Blackjack. Sales grew through the first half of 1982 before the Intellivision II took its place. The Video Game Crash of 1983 took out the Intellivision (along with all of the other consoles) and put an end to Mattel Electronics Inc. However, a former VP of Mattel Electronics went on to sell both master components and games through mail order until 1990.
The Intellivision was the first 16-bit console.
- CPU: General Instruments 1610 @ 3.58 Mhz
- Video Processor: Standard Television Interface Chip (STIC), 160x96 resolution, 16 colors, 8 sprites
- Audio Processor: General Instruments AY-3-8914, three channels
- RAM: Approx. 4K
- Storage: Cartridge