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The Wii is a social entertainment device

Discussion in 'Nintendo Wii Chat' started by cloud7, Feb 27, 2008.

  1. cloud7

    cloud7 Wii lovers

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    This isn’t going to be another post comparing the merit of the Wii to the AppleTV. But it is important to state for the record why a team of Mac fans chose Nintendo’s hardware over Apple’s. Consider it a wish list for Mr. Jobs:

    standards compliant browser - our biggest unmet need? support for Flash 9, but that’s really Adobe’s ball and we can rectify that when we spec our own hardware/software stack
    support for third party developers - Alan Quatermain is a genius angel for making it possible to build applications in anticipation of some unspoken future when Apple lets third party developers at their box or at least promises not to firmware “upgrade” them off. Nintendo actually customized the Opera browser to allow functions that are particular to the Wii experience (like the Wiimote) which is a great help for developers.
    The Wimote - if you haven’t used it, you may not know what I mean, but I think the biggest interface advance last year was not the iPhone’s touch screen, it’s the Wiimote IR sensor. Did you know it can point at stuff and drag it around from like 10 feet away. Seriously, you’ve got to come over to our office and try it.
    number of devices connected to TVs - total Apple TV sales are measured in thousands, Wii sales are measured in millions (and Apple TV had a year head start).
    Perhaps the biggest gap for Apple TV for our purposes is a cultural one: the overwhelming download mentality of the product design. iTunes and the iTunes Music Store were breakthroughs for the digital music transition: a) preserved the transaction business model b) downloads allow for easiest repeat usage. Problem is in video a) repeat views are the exception b) the business model is media based. Hence the initial linking of AppleTV to iTunes on a desktop, and the persistence iTunes download distribution even though Take 2 is freed from the desktop proxy is a square peg/round hole.

    But it wasn’t until we became a Wii developers that we realized the unique advantage of the device. Even if the Apple TV fills all the gaps above and forgoes the download mentality, it will still lack the Wii’s spirit of approachability. The Wii is the most social hardware device I have ever used. Obviously, devices like the mobile phone are more pervasively revolutionary for social interaction so that’s not what I mean. The Wii is social in the same way IRC was: it empowers/emboldens shy people to participate in social activities. It breaks down real barriers to interaction and assumptions of power (but that’s a topic worthy of discussion all its own). Suffice an example: my 5 year old niece can legitimately beat her dad at Wii bowling, and he still finds enjoyment in the subtleties of the control set. The Wii’s inherent accessibility means it is a platform to reach people who otherwise wouldn’t care to participate/consume the still rarefied world of Internet TV.

    This is all to say that we believe the potential disruptor here isn’t (primarily) our (or any) application, it’s the Wii itself. One thing worth noting: we are by far not the first to try Internet TV on the Wii. Sofa Tube gets credit for planting the idea initially in my head back in 2006. A year later, but perhaps more famously, Stumble Upon took a few weeks to make a Wii custom interface for Stumble Video. What we realized is in our few weeks of working on it is that if you play to the Wii’s strengths your application becomes implicitly friendlier. If ffwd takes credit for anything, it is in setting the upper most bar for a video user experience on the Wii. And what we accomplished truly shocked us.

    We think “The Wii is a social entertainment device” is an important realization to share, so for the first time we are actively encouraging the spread of a meme. We’ve got one 2000 Wii points card (that’s approximately 2 classic games) for up to 5 bloggers who trackback this story from a blog with a page rank of at least 5 (as proofed at PRChecker). If we don’t get enough over 5s we’ll go to the 4s and then the 3s (yay! everyone can play). If this is an effective incentive we may go buy more cards to give a way. First come first served and keep in mind we’ll eventually need your contact info to send you the card.

    This entry was posted by Patrick on Wednesday, February 20th, 2008 at 6:43 pm and is filed under News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.




    Edmond
    Edmond@ffwd.com
     
    #1 cloud7, Feb 27, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 27, 2008
  2. FRuMMaGe

    FRuMMaGe Waluigi's #1 Fan!

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    Big post.

    Welcome to WiiChat
     
  3. Adamquest64

    Adamquest64 WiiChat Member

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    I agree, the Wii is great for surfing the net!
     
  4. gidget

    gidget . ☆ ☆ ☆ .

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  5. WiitnessID

    WiitnessID WiiChat Member

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    cloud7 great find but nintendo has been following these guys for a while. What is different is their approach. Nintendo is in to designing entertainment software apple is into function mostly. Apple has great physical design yet they just can no dump a whole platform to start some thing new every 4 years and also the price is a problem ofr lots of people except the designers. Nintendo could pooping on the toilet endlessly fun if they tried it seemed...LOL This is what apple lacks software draws. It use to be called the killer app. If you notice most games went to the PC yet apple did not produce their own killer app unless you are an OSx user but notice how nintendo doesn't even really promote an OS at all. It just works. When ever you have a real software powerhouse doing hardware then you can always make things work better for people. Now if only the mac would go ahead and make a 3d mouse that works on a pad, in hapticfeedback-mode, along with a pointer style or even a wacom table on screen style standard. Then I would get another mac other Wise it's all laptop action for me.
     
  6. cloud7

    cloud7 Wii lovers

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    WiitnessID defintely I agree with you.

    By the way the 2000 wii points card are still up for grabs. Do let me know if you all have any questions about the contest.

    Edmond@ffwd.com
     
  7. LoganSix

    LoganSix WiiChat Member

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    "social entertainment device" ?
    Yes, I have Wii parties all the time. Nothing like a bunch of adults drinking, chatting, and playing the Wii.
     
  8. cloud7

    cloud7 Wii lovers

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    Just wondering if you guys interested to watch internet videos through wii?
     
  9. LoganSix

    LoganSix WiiChat Member

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    While convergence of technologies would be a great thing, I don't think the Wii should be everything. A well built DVR/Media machine can easily stream/record/play back multiple formats. I would rather have the DVR handle playing DVD's, recording shows, and providing content from the web. There are cases when you need to do this in the background and having a dedicated machine is just better.

    While it would be nice to be able to see everything on a web page through the Wii. The Wii would not be my choice for an all in one Media center. As mentioned, it would require it to run things in the background while you are doing something else and I would rather have the Wii concentrate on giving me great game play instead.
     
  10. cloud7

    cloud7 Wii lovers

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    Interesting view you have. Just wondering if you have tired watching internet videos therough wii's opera browser. By the way what do you mean by "it would require it to run things in the background while you are doing something else."
     

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