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Canada Handhelds Nintendo Portables Games Hardware

The Wii Mini Is Real, Arrives December 7 — In Canada 139

Posted by timothy
from the tora-tora-tora dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Yesterday there was a rumor doing the rounds that Nintendo was set to release a brand new version of the Wii console called the Wii Mini. The new machine would be significantly smaller than the current Wii, is expected to ship with a Wii Remote Plus, Nunchuk, and Sensor Bar, and hopefully carries a much lower (sub-$100) price. Well, it looks as though this wasn't just a rumor. Best Buy Canada has it listed with an image on its front page and a December 7 release date." Also at PC Mag.
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The Wii Mini Is Real, Arrives December 7 — In Canada

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  • My son's Wii requires a fan be set up behind it for cooling or it shuts down.

    Presumably they fixed that for this version (may have fixed it previously...I don't know, I just use it for Netflix).

    • Re:Cooling (Score:5, Informative)

      by ZiakII (829432) on Tuesday November 27, 2012 @11:47AM (#42106483)
      My son's Wii requires a fan be set up behind it for cooling or it shuts down.

      Presumably they fixed that for this version (may have fixed it previously...I don't know, I just use it for Netflix).



      That sounds like a clogged exhaust fan, I would just take a can of air to it, and possibly dissemble the fan and clean it. Never had that problem with mine and it runs in a small shelf under the TV.
      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by rjejr (921275)
        Turn off the "always on" setting. About 2 years ago they did an update and everybody's Wii has been running hot since then. When your Wii is "off" the front top light should be a deep dark red, NOT orange. Of course since this new one doesn't have any internet overheating and always on won't be a problem.
        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by Myrrh (53301)

          Don't know where you got that idea, but I've had mine more than two years and the only time the red LED has ever lit up is when the console has lost power. Is this info in the manual somewhere?

          • by Anonymous Coward

            manual???
            What's hard to understand, there are 2 settings.. ORANGE (soft off, always on)

          • Re: (Score:1, Interesting)

            by Anonymous Coward

            Standby (yellow) is pushing the off button quick or using off on the Wii-mote controller. Off (red) is when you hold down the power button for over 2 seconds until it turns red. It is in the manual somewhere, but if I recall it's not somewhere readily obvious.

        • by Anonymous Coward

          The orange light is an indicator that WiiConnect24 is enabled. This leaves the wireless on while the console is "off", allowing the console to receive messages from your contacts when you aren't using the console. You can disable WiiConnect24 in the system menu.

      • According to the Verge (see http://www.theverge.com/2012/11/27/3698060/nintendo-wii-mini-no-internet-no-future [theverge.com] ), ", the Wii Mini comes with some unfortunate compromises, most notably the lack of any sort of online connectivity. Instead of being a media streamer-killing Netflix box that can also play a huge library of games, the Wii Mini feels more like a missed opportunity."

      • by sycodon (149926)

        Actually, it did this right out of the shrink wrap.

        Also, it does this while it is active (so it not an issue of "always" on).

        But what the heck, it works (with the fan) and that's all I'm concerned with.

    • Re:Cooling (Score:5, Funny)

      by blackfrancis75 (911664) on Tuesday November 27, 2012 @12:10PM (#42106629)
      Err, from TFH:

      The Wii Mini Is Real, Arrives December 7 — In Canada

      Cooling won't be a problem..

  • Wiiii (Score:3, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 27, 2012 @11:47AM (#42106485)

    The Wii2 or Wiiii

  • by bananaquackmoo (1204116) on Tuesday November 27, 2012 @11:48AM (#42106499)
    But it has no internet? Really? Seriously? No thanks.
    • by Trepidity (597)

      Why does it need internet?

      • For downloading games from the Wii store and Netflix. Half the games my kids play are SNES/N64 classics. When not playing I'm catching up on movies and old TV shows on Netflix.
      • by NevarMore (248971)

        Netflix (this is my main use for my Wii)
        Playing games online
        Using the built in browser
        Getting game updates

    • by Applekid (993327)

      What gets me is, how much did they save by removing WiFi from a system that already communicates wirelessly to it's controllers? It couldn't have been very much. Microsoft's cheaper 360 design went the other direction and bundled it in! Makes Microsoft look like Santa IMO.

      At least with internet connectivity the console could buy games off the shop at whatever price Nintendo wants to ask. With how mature the Wii game market is, I don't see anyone pinching pennies by buying this system over a Wii classic as b

      • Re:No internet? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by gmarsh (839707) on Tuesday November 27, 2012 @02:10PM (#42107865)

        Other than sharing the same 2.4GHz ISM frequency band, bluetooth (used for their controllers) and WiFi share basically nothing. In the regular Wii they use separate chipsets, separate antennas, etc. They're stripping out a few bucks worth of hardware. Not to mention, implementing WiFi in a product invariably involves paying a bunch of license fees to patent holders etc - either included in the price of your wifi chipset or paid separately. This adds a couple more bucks to the design.

        Take the $99 they're selling the thing for at the store and subtract store markup, shipping, factory tooling, packaging, the rest of the stuff in the Wii box, etc. and you don't have much money to spend on the Wii Mini itself. A few bucks spent adding WiFi could end up being a significant part of the cost.

        Honestly, I have to throw some praise at Nintendo for making a game system that's so cheap. My workplace is doing an "adopt-a-family" thing for the christmas season, where employees get together and buy christmas gifts for single parents who can't afford much for their kids. At $99, it's made our shopping list.

        • by n7ytd (230708)

          Take the $99 they're selling the thing for at the store and subtract store markup, shipping, factory tooling, packaging, the rest of the stuff in the Wii box, etc. and you don't have much money to spend on the Wii Mini itself. A few bucks spent adding WiFi could end up being a significant part of the cost.

          Honestly, I have to throw some praise at Nintendo for making a game system that's so cheap. My workplace is doing an "adopt-a-family" thing for the christmas season, where employees get together and buy christmas gifts for single parents who can't afford much for their kids. At $99, it's made our shopping list.

          Your point about separate radios aside, the original Wii is still available for around $120. Wal-Mart had it on black Friday for $89. Losing Internet on this new console for the same price seems to be a step backward.

      • by mattack2 (1165421)

        Not just no WiFi, but

        Internet connectivity features are not available.

        ..so no Ethernet port either.

        I don't have a Wii, but have considered getting one largely to play the old relatively old cheap games from the Wii store, plus a few Wii specific games.. and thought this cheaper one would be a good fit, but nope..

  • by Covalent (1001277) on Tuesday November 27, 2012 @12:00PM (#42106573)
    It's not like the original Wii was enormous...it may have been the smallest major gaming console ever sold. And since the price is not significantly less and the functionality is significantly less (no internet) I'm left wondering one thing:


    Why would Nintendo waste their money developing and selling this?
    • They're not wasting their money.. is replaces the original Wii. So they have 2 products - The full blown Wii U and then Wii Mini. The Wii Mini will be their entry level machine, no internet is great so I can let the kids play and not have to worry about them accessing the internet - it's a basic console. It's also only $99. If I want to access the internet and have full access to the internet, then I have my Wii U. http://www.nintendo.com/wiimini?country=CA&lang=en/ [nintendo.com]
      • by Merk42 (1906718)
        The Wii U is an entirely different console, it's not the Wii with a touchscreen controller (gamepad). A Wii U game, that comes on a disc, that doesn't even require the gamepad would NOT play on the Wii/Wii Mini
        • The Wii U is not entirely different. The Wii U plays Wii games and can use the Wii controlers. You could say that the Wii is a subset of Wii U.
          • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

            by Anonymous Coward

            The Classic Wii menu on the U is actually like the old Commodore C128s (in 64 mode)... they reboot into a separate ROM which has the original Wii firmware. You go back to the Wii U menu by turning off the console.

          • Not entirely, however, the non-original Wii models (the quietely released smaller model and this new mini) are, since they don't play GameCube games (the regular Wii does, unlike the Wii U)

          • The Wii also played Gamecube games, but calling it a superset of a Gamecube is a bit of a stretch.

            The DS played GBA games, but calling it a superset of a GBA is a bit of a stretch.

            The GBA played Gameboy games, but calling it a superset of a Gameboy is a bit of a stretch.

            The PS3 originally played PS2 games, but calling it a superset of a PS2 is a bit of a stretch.

            The PS2 played PS1 games, but calling it a superset of a PS1 is a bit of a stretch.

            etc.

      • by Synerg1y (2169962)
        Sony does the same with their gaming consoles, I don't remember them removing features though, the timing is way different on the releases also.
        • by dstyle5 (702493)
          I don't remember them removing features though

          The PS3 is the console they did that with. Backwards compat with PS2, ability to install Linux, fewer USB ports I think, etc.
        • The PS1 lost its parallel and serial ports over the assorted console revisions, and the small version of the PS2 can't support a hard drive. And didn't initial-relase PS2s have FireWire?

    • by randomErr (172078)
      Why would they remove internet from the classic Wii?
      • The internet is rarely used for games. The system is suppose to be used for games. Thats the reason that the GameCube didn't have a full size DVD drive.
      • It costs more to include the networking components and they want to lower the cost for extras in the controller
      • They don't want to support internet services on a previous generation platform
      • Owners are not using the Wii Store because its become stale and is used more on the DS/3DS. You an only download SMB
      • by Osgeld (1900440)

        this will be the second strip down, I own one of the little Wii's, the one with no gamecube support, and its almost half the size of the original. Why nintendo would remodel the Wii again after the next console is released, and effectively support 3 platforms at the same time is a bit confusing.

        There is no shortage of Wii's and since the platform has grown stagnant its already a hard sale for overstocked stores, but its not my problem, good luck with that sega ... er nintendo (sorry I was thinking about whe

    • by Applekid (993327)

      It's not like the original Wii was enormous...it may have been the smallest major gaming console ever sold. And since the price is not significantly less and the functionality is significantly less (no internet) I'm left wondering one thing:

      Why would Nintendo waste their money developing and selling this?

      To confuse grandparents.

      "My little Pumpkin wants a Wii U. Is that a U? Golly, I can hardly read this. That doesn't make sense. It's probably a Wii 2. Yup, they'll be so happy. Also, let me put a few butterscotch candies in the box."

  • Slim consoles are nothing unusual, but they're usually released before the next generation console as a ploy to extend the life of the hardware. The last time that I'm aware of a console manufacturer releasing a slim console after their next-gen console shipped was the Atari 2600 Jr, released in 1985, 3 years after the 5200 was released. In that case the 5200 was such a bomb that Atari needed to buy time for the 7800 to get released. I'm not sure what Nintendo's strategy is here, they already dominate

    • by tlhIngan (30335)

      Easy - as a low end option - we're talking $100 here. A price point no one else can match (the Wii's $250 price point was matched and beaten by Sony and Microsoft, and even $200 you can get a basic Xbox. So now Nintendo's uncompetitive so they need to have a lower price still - $100 in this case. The Wii U is still "novel" enough to be able to command $300-350, but the Wii is uncompetitive at its current price point.

      Hell, at $100 it's cheap enough for experimentation or to toss in the car for car trips.

    • by Kjella (173770)

      I'm not sure what Nintendo's strategy is here, they already dominate the low end console market.

      The Wii sales are pretty tapped out, last week down to 91k vs 276k for the PS3 and 354k for the Xbox360. I guess they're using the Wii U publicity to get some halo attention for the new, cheaper Wii which occupies a completely different price point.

    • The last time that I'm aware of a console manufacturer releasing a slim console after their next-gen console shipped was the Atari 2600 Jr,

      Under fifty bucks!

    • they already dominate the low end console market

      But unlike RIM they see the writing on the wall and want to stay ahead of the android/iOS encroachment on their space. Eventually the Nexus sphere or whatever will re-launch, or maybe something else similar, and it will be a huge contender in the casual gaming space.

    • The last time that I'm aware of a console manufacturer releasing a slim console after their next-gen console shipped was the Atari 2600 Jr

      I seem to remember the NES-101 coming out after the Super NES.

      I'm not sure what Nintendo's strategy is here, they already dominate the low end console market.

      It probably comes with a redesign to defeat Homebrew Channel. For one thing, no Internet means no Homebrew Browser.

      • by drinkypoo (153816)

        It probably comes with a redesign to defeat Homebrew Channel. For one thing, no Internet means no Homebrew Browser.

        It will almost certainly include a patch to defeat HBC again, but that doesn't prevent one from loading homebrew directly onto an SD card.

        • by tepples (727027)

          that doesn't prevent one from loading homebrew directly onto an SD card.

          Unless it also patches the IOS used by Brawl not to read files that look like Smash Stack.

  • I don't see any specs or pictures of the rear. I wonder if the Wii will finally get a digital output? Or have DVD playback built in?
  • And if not, is there a price break on the original Wii?

    • If you want homebrew on a device the size of a Wii, get a Veriton from Acer.
    • by CastrTroy (595695)
      You can still get the original Wii for $129 from Walmart US. At only $30 more, I don't see much of a use for this new Wii Mini, especially because it doesn't have internet. Which means it can't play Netflix. You might as just buy the old Wii, which was pretty much already mini, and use that . Plus the old Wii comes with Wii Sports and Wii Sports Resort. It looks as though the Wii Mini doesn't come with any games at all.
  • Now the kids will be playing with their small Wii?
    Streaming from their little Wii?

  • Wanna play with it?
  • They sent me this link earlier today: http://www.nintendo.com/wiimini?country=CA&lang=en/ [nintendo.com]
  • Could one add a (wired?) internet connection using a USB dongle?

    • by bedouin (248624)

      I'm using a USB adapter with my Wii. Nintendo sold one themselves. But again, not sure about the software or the extent that it can be modded.

  • by Nexion (1064) on Tuesday November 27, 2012 @12:22PM (#42106759)

    I wouldn't want to be accused of having the smallest Wii on the block.

  • They should have called it the Wee Wii.

  • I don't know anyone who ever complained about the original Wii being "too big" (it's already the smallest home console on the market). Or, for that matter, anyone who has purchased one in the past 1-2 years and complained of it being "too expensive" (it's already the least expensive home console on the market). You can buy the regular (white) Wii for $120 right now at Best Buy, the $20 savings is not huge.

    I suspect that these ones also have broken backwards-compatibility with the gamecube, so you are
    • by mattack2 (1165421)

      I don't have a problem with making it cheaper, or even taking out features WHEN you make it cheaper.. as long as those are made clear.

      It is fairly clear (standard disclaimer at the bottom of the page) that it doesn't play GameCube games.

      The Wii mini console is not compatible with Nintendo GameCube Game Discs or accessories.

    • by Nyder (754090)

      I don't know anyone who ever complained about the original Wii being "too big" (it's already the smallest home console on the market). Or, for that matter, anyone who has purchased one in the past 1-2 years and complained of it being "too expensive" (it's already the least expensive home console on the market). You can buy the regular (white) Wii for $120 right now at Best Buy, the $20 savings is not huge.

      I suspect that these ones also have broken backwards-compatibility with the gamecube, so you are definitely getting less usefulness for less money.

      We can play gamecube games off of usb and SD now on the wii.

  • This is going to confuse the hell out of people this holiday season who are already confused enough about Nintendo's consoles as it is. Nintendo has seemingly done a poor job educating consumers, so they're left often still thinking that Wii U is just a thing you buy to add on to the Wii. They don't realize it's a separate console. This is going to compound that confusion.

    That said, I'll buy one. Primarily because I'd like to have one to put in my shelf full of collected consoles and I have no idea where my

  • Yes, indeed, $99 is sub-$100...

    Statistically, the expected value of sub-$100 is $50 though!

    • by Nyder (754090)

      Yes, indeed, $99 is sub-$100...

      Statistically, the expected value of sub-$100 is $50 though!

      Maybe to you, but in the 40+ years I've a been alive, sub $100 usually meant in the 90's. You say $50 when it's $50 because while 50 is less then 100, it's not close enough to 100 to consider it this way.

  • So no, you're talking out your rear end. How about some authoritative information? rjejr is correct. You can go into your Wii Settings and turn off the background data options--you know, the one that updates your weather and news and all that while your Wii is in standby mode. If you don't use your Wii for weather/news, you can save yourself some electricity/money by disabling the standby mode. http://goo.gl/uavVx [goo.gl]
  • I think they are smoking crack at Nintendo.

    1) You can buy a fully functional Wii with 2 games for $150, why buy a crippled variant for $99 that won't allow you to transfer content from an old Wii to this one?
    2) The market is already saturated with Wii's collecting dust. I doubt the number of people that have been waiting patiently for a cheap crippled Wii are significant.
    3) Why make it butt ugly? If they came out with a nice slick mini version of the Wii that was fully functional I could see it people gra

  • Why didn't they go the other way: give the thing lots of storage (cheaper now than when Wii came out) and dump the disk drive? I'm wondering if this could have been a nice little box for those who hate discs lying around...
    • by bedouin (248624)

      Modding a Wii is painless. I have a 500gb drive attached to mine and haven't used discs in months.

  • I tried to RTFA but it crashes Opera on my ipod just after the page finishes rendering. Repeated three times and three crashes with lost tabs each time.

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