While you’d never expect Nintendo to supply a device that most “casual gamer” people won’t bother to buy, I’m making my prediction right here: This thing isn’t going to take off, and you might see why when you read this announcement – or you might entirely disagree.
Nintendo has announced it’s new DS, the DSi, which looks fairly similar to the DS Lite. In fact, its design is almost exactly the same, save that the new DSi forgoes the GBA slot for a twin camera setup – one camera on the hinge (0.3MP), and one on the outside of the top clamshell (3MP). The device also has internal storage and an SD card slot, though no word on just how much storage there is. The DSi is also marginally thinner than the DS Lite, by a few millimeters, and the screens are marginally larger – 3.25in instead of the DS Lite’s 3in, but no increase in resolution.
UPDATE: Reggie Fils-Aime has recently announced that the DSi will not be hitting US shores until “well into 2009.” Start saving up, kiddos. If you’re even more curious, the Japanese DSi site is up.
Image Courtesy of Engadget
In addition to announcing the DSi, Nintendo also said that there will be Nintendo WiFi hotspots around the nation where you, the humble DSi user, will be able to access a DSi Shop and download “DSWare” software a la the Wii Shop Channel. Such software offerings will even include a free internet browser. No DSWare titles will exceed 800 “Nintendo Points,” which is the new name for Wii Points.
Nintendo has announced the DSi as a “third platform” – meaning it won’t be replacing your DS Lite, and probably won’t be replacing it in your local game store. Since the DS Lite and DSi will probably be sold side-by-side, it looks like Nintendo has created a niche market for the DSi – with little software may end up becoming available that takes advantage of the twin cameras as everybody else already owns a DS Lite, and with the device being marketed as a “complement” to the current DS Lite, its offerings might not be enough to make people switch systems.
The DSi launches on November 1st in Japan for 18,900 Yen (or about $180 USD). Reggie Fils-Aime said for Nintendo that the DSi may not see US shores until “well into 2009,” due to the current popularity of the DS Lite hardware.