How Long Do Amiibo Work?

by Doc – Owner, Founder, Surprised It’s Been 7 Years Since Amiibo Came Out

When amiibo were first released, the question was raised as to how long amiibo function. Nobody really knew – NTAG215 chips weren’t used for many applications before they came out, and they were cheap and disposable enough that they certainly didn’t get used long enough to wear out.

Well, it’s been seven years, and now a few amiibo are starting to wear out. I give you this:

According to Amiibo Guru (the tweeter of this tweet), he’s had the ROB for two years, and bought it used, so it’s fair to say this ROB is about five years old.

In addition to Guru’s ROB, my own Ganondorf amiibo (which was bought at release in 2015) stopped scanning last year as well. It took about five years for that chip to die as well. So while the rest of our amiibo are working just fine, including my amiibo that were bought on the first day of availability, the earliest amiibo seem to be dying out is five years after their print. That’s pretty good durability for a $0.30 chip.

You can alleviate this by using your own unofficial amiibo cards with freshly-manufactured NTAG215 chips. Amiibo chips wear out faster the more you use them, so you should use new cards to preserve the functionality of your older, more valuable amiibo.

If your question was answered with this post and you’re needing NTAG215 chips to preserve your amiibo, try this Amazon listing! This is an Amazon Affiliates link, and it keeps us up and running!

5 Comments

  1. Can you transfer an amiibo/ntag215 data to pc for backup, then when it dies, simply transfer that data without loss back to a new amiibo/ntag215 chip to use retaining all that characters data?

    I’m thinking, of course, of SSB FP Character data that we work on and build up as well as functionality of the amiibo. I’m assuming you’d need to use power saves for amiibo to achieve this if possible, and of course need to back up regularly as you build your FP Character up.

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  2. That’s brilliant, I’ll have to do it with my amiibo’s too then. Do you need power saves for amiibo in order to make a backup to transfer and restore (I’m presuming it’s easier) or just one of the phone apps?
    I’m on iphone, so have tagmiibo at the moment, but I do have a pc and laptop too.

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    1. They all work for making backups – on Powersaves the function is called “Backup”, and iirc Tagmiibo calls it Save? I think. You may have to check on that one.

      Powersaves is the most user-friendly, so if you’ve got that ready, I recommend that.

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  3. I think I’m getting it a bit now, played around with a few apps and found one called ‘Ally Collect and Backup’ to be really good.. Its ios and paid, but able to do a lot with that. Not sure how to send the backups to pc though. Quite intuitive too.

    I’ve not got powersaves, but live in the uk so it’s about £20 which isn’t too bad.

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