United States International Trade Commision Rulings And Harmonized Tariff Schedule
faqs.org  Rulings By Number  Rulings By Category  Tariff Numbers
faqs.org > Rulings and Tariffs Home > Rulings By Number > 1998 NY Rulings > NY C84556 - NY C84633 > NY C84586

Previous Ruling Next Ruling
NY C84586

March 17, 1998

CLA-2-95:RR:NC:2:224 C84586


TARIFF NO.: 9504.90.4000

Steven W. Baker and Associates
One Sutter Street, suite 1004
San Francisco, CA 94104-4919

RE: The tariff classification of accessories for the GAME BOY Portable Video Game System from Japan.

Dear Mr. Baker:

In your letter dated March 4, 1998, you requested a tariff classification ruling on behalf of Nintendo of America Inc.

The merchandise consists of two accessory functions used in conjunction with the operation of the Nintendo Game Boy Portable Video Game System (Game Boy). The "Game Boy Camera," similar to standard Game Boy game cartridges, is a cartridge which fits into the game pak slot in the back of the Game Boy unit. This cartridge contains the software for four different games. In addition, the cartridge has a built-in digital camera that allows the player to input images into the four games programmed within the camera cartridge. The player can now manipulate and alter these images, input them into one of the games and assume the identity of the game characters, either a juggler, a DJ, an alien space invader or a runner. It is said that the cartridge can also perform the additional function of operating as a low-resolution digital camera.

The player uses the Game Boy controls to control the operation of the Game Boy Camera. Various menus allow the user to take pictures and modify pictures. The user can shoot, edit and store up to 30 different pictures. Images can be manipulated for different effects before being inserted into one of the four games.

The "Game Boy Printer" enables the player to print a copy of the Game Boy display screen. Similar to the interaction of a PC printer with its PC, this printer receives digital information from the Game Boy unit and prints either an unmodified copy of the digital picture as taken by the camera, or the modified version as manipulated and developed in the game software incorporated in the camera cartridge.

The Game Boy Printer is coupled by a Universal Game Link Cable to the Game Boy and is driven by software included in the cartridge. It can be used with any printer compatible cartridges to print on a roll of thermal Game Boy paper. The sample provided by your client is being returned at their request.

The Game Boy Camera and the Game Boy Printer, which are solely used with the Game Boy, perform functions that amplify or enhance the operational play of the parent Game Boy unit. Thus, the Game Boy Printer and Camera are Game Boy accessories.

Note 3 to chapter 95, Harmonized Tariff System of the United States (HTS), provides that "parts and accessories which are suitable for use solely or principally with articles of this chapter are to be classified with those articles." Thus, subject to Note 1 to chapter 95, HTS, (which is not at issue in this instance), since the articles here are accessories that are solely or principally used with an article of chapter 95, specifically, heading 9504, HTS, they must be classified under that heading.

The applicable subheading for the Game Boy Camera and the Game Boy Printer will be 9504.90.4000, HTS, which provides for accessories for game machines, other than coin- or token-operated. The duty rate will be free.

We are unable to provide a binding classification on the Game Boy printer paper or the Universal Game Link Cable (MGB-010), which connects the Game Boy Printer to the Game Boy unit, without information indicative of their major applications.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Section 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 177).

A copy of the ruling or the control number indicated above should be provided with the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If you have any questions regarding the ruling, contact National Import Specialist Tom McKenna at 212-466-5475.


Robert B. Swierupski Director, National Commodity Specialist Division

Previous Ruling Next Ruling

See also: