Mattel Intellivision SystemMattel actually began working on their Intellivision unit before Atari released their famous VCS in 1977. It was finally released to the public in 1980, bearing the first 16-bit console CPU (not to compare it to the later, more powerful systems, such as Genesis and SNES). The sales were a decent 150,000 that first year, and Mattel sold out there inventory completely. In fact, it was successful enough for Mattel to create a subsidiary (Mattel Electronics) just for the purpose of creating games in-house, without third-party developers. The Intellivision did not, however, surpass the VCS in sales. In the next several years, Mattel's system sales would steadily rise. By the time 1982 rolled around, the Intellivision sales were doing very well, but would still not outsell the VCS (though it did give it some serious competition).
But then came several blows to Mattel and the Intellivision. The Atari released their infamous 5200 Supersystem, and Coleco released the ultimately dominant Colecovision. These new consoles, coupled with the impending 1984 video game crash, forced Mattel Electronics out of business. But still, the Intellivision still made a few sales, no matter how sparse. So, in order combat these new rivals, Mattel advertised - on every Intellivision box - a computer keyboard add-on that would later be released to run more "upscale" programs for a more "mature" audience. The problem? The keyboard was never released. There is even debate as to whether Mattel Electronics even intended to release this periphrial, given the overly expensive production costs. As a result, they got slapped with a fine on a regular basis until they satisfied their advertising claims. In a haphazard response to these fines and public infuriation, they released a mediocre personal computer, called the Aquarius. It was in no way as powerful as rival console company computers, as well as companies creating nothing but computers.
In addition, Mattel Electronics worked on "sequels" to their original system, The Intellivision II and Intellivision III, which were basically re-vamped, repackaged versions of the original. For example, the original Intellivision had contollers attached to their system base (similar to Mattel's stand-alone Telstar games released seveal years earlier), but the newer consoles had separate controllers. There was an expansion module that worked on the later Intellivision units allowing users to play VCS games. There would also be an Intellivision IV unit in the works, but it would never be released.
Game development was slow during the bad years, but existent. In fact, it wasn't until 1990 the Intellivision system ultimately stopped customer support for their games and systems - the sure sign that the system was officially obsolete. Ultimately, the Intellivision console had the longest-running official run and and support of any system, including the later consoles. Despite the terrible "marketing scams" Mattel had been accused of, it was a profitable system and was overall able to capture the older audience, making the Atari system look like one for the kiddies. Also with its 2600 expansion add-on, the Intellivision would have the largest library of any console system - ever - on Earth.