In 1991 Sega entered the portable gaming market with the Game Gear. It was touted as a portable Master System but it had arguably better graphics due to the larger color palette. It was superior to the Game Boy with it’s color screen and TV Tuner. The system is held lengthwise at the sides much like the new Game Boy Advance and it great for those with bigger hands.
However, despite its technical superiority, it did not gain a significant market share due to the enormous popularity of the Game Boy. It did have a few setbacks: the backlit screen meant that the batteries only lasted three to five hours, and the Game Gear was a rather large and bulky system. The market at the time wanted lightweight and more battery life. The Game Boy excelled over the Game Gear and other competitors because of this. Mostly, however, the Game Gear suffered from a lack of quality games, as Sega failed to sign up as many key software developers as Nintendo.
A Master System to Game Gear converter called the Master Gear had been released, which allowed Master System games to be played on the Game Gear. This added 100s of titles to the Game Gears library.
Its too bad that there are so many systems that actually were more powerful than the Game Boy but never were able to dethrone Nintendo in the handheld market. Don’t take that as me not liking Nintendo as I am a big supporter of them but I just hate to see great hardware abandoned.