Most gamers may know it as Nintendo Revolution, but the new name is Wii (pronounced as “we”). As of April 27th, Nintendo’s seventh-generation video game console, their fifth home console, became the newest successor to Nintendo GameCube. Wii is unique with the Wii Remote, or “Wii-mote”, which can be used as a handheld pointing device and as detecting motion in three dimensions. The controller contains a speaker and a rumbling device which provides sensory feedback.
As of June 2006, an exact release date has yet to be confirmed. Nintendo’s most recent statements confirm that Nintendo plans to release Wii in the 4th quarter of 2006. Internationally, Nintendo hopes to launch with no more than four months difference between the first and last launching regions. At a June 2006 briefing in Japan, it was stated that a precise release date and price would be announced by September.
It was confirmed that Wii will cost no more than $250. A Nintendo spokesman said that the price in the U. K. will be in line with Japanese and US prices. Nintendo has intentions to have approximately 6 million console units and 17 million software units by March 31, 2007.
Wii is Nintendo’s smallest home game console yet, at approximately the size of three standard DVD cases stacked together. The console has been confirmed to have the ability to stand either horizontally or vertically. Nintendo has stated that a small attachment can be equipped to play on DVD Video.
Nintendo has displayed Wii in various colors: platinum, lime green, white, black, blue and red. The final colors of the console are still to be announced. The systems shown at E3 2006 and in different trailers appear to have several small changes from the original design. Nintendo not only had branding on the case which replaced the Wii logo, but the disc loading slot is enlarged slightly as the reset button is moved from next to the eject button to the power button. The power indicator light is moved from next to the power button inside the button. The port for the sensor bar, a device used for the Wii Remote’s three dimensional sensing is found at the rear of the console. This port did not appear in any of the former Wii hardware images, including the images in Nintendo’s E3 media press kit.
At E3 2006, Nintendo announced WiiConnect24, a feature of the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection that will permit the user to remain connected to the Internet in standby mode. Some possibilities of this newest feature that were mentioned at E3 2006 included allowing friends to visit the player’s village in games like Animal Crossing, and downloading new updates for games while in standby mode. It would also be possible to download DS promotional demos using WiiConnect24 and later transfer it to Nintendo DS.
Wii will support wireless connectivity with the Nintendo DS. It’s been stated that Nintendo was still ironing out details when features using this connectivity would be available to the public.
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