The Satellite allows up to four players to play the NES anywhere in the room without the necessity of wires running from the NES to the players' controllers. While a normal controller has a range of 3 feet, the NES Satellite expanded the usable range to 15 feet. To use, a small infrared receiver plugs into the two controller ports on the front of the NES. The main Satellite unit is powered by 6 C-cell batteries and must have a line of sight to the receiver. The unit has four controller ports which could accommodate any type of wired NES controllers. The unit includes "Turbo" selectors for both the A and B buttons.
A similar product called the NES Four Score was released a year later, although it did not allow wireless play.
There are not many four-player games for the NES that take full advantage of the Satellite's capabilities, so it is most useful for its wireless function.