Iwata gives insight into Wii U’s development

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Nintendo’s been pretty tight-lipped regarding the development of the Wii U. While most other hardware houses love toting the power of their new console spewing numbers and random acronyms, Nintendo usually plays its cards close to its chest. Lately the only insight we’ve been getting about the power of the Wii U has been by developing studios themselves, however the most recent update of Iwata Asks gives us a lot more information right from the source.

The lengthy (but interesting) article talks about some design choices Nintendo made developing the Wii U that changes the way previous hardware designs have worked. For example new system’s CPU and GPU are embedded into the same chip, minimizing motherboard real-estate and power consumption. Iwata also re-iterates that minimal power usage has been a focal point of Nintendo’s home consoles, which is evident in the Nintendo Direct broadcast in September that announced the Wii U only consuming roughly 70 watts when powered.

Furthermore we’re also given information about the internal ventilation of the system. Those who adopted the original white Xbox 360s were prone to hardware failures (the “Red Ring of Death”) due to sub-optimal internal airflow, which resulted in the GPU overheating and detaching from the motherboard. Clearly this is something hardware manufactures of all companies will want to avoid like the plague, and Nintendo has described their preference in overcoming a similar fate.

As for some cosmetic changes, unlike the original Wii, two USB 2.0 ports can be found on the front of the Wii U, making accessibility easier. Also people may have noticed that in promotional videos/demonstrations/photos the Wii U console is always laying flat; this is to differentiate the new console from the Wii, since the main focus has been on the GamePad controller itself rather than the system box. However a stand will be available for those who wish to prop their consoles vertically for convenience.

There is much more information available on Nintendo’s Iwata Asks article, and is an interesting read for those intrigued by the system’s development process.

Does this information get you more excited for the Wii U’s launch? Let us know what you think about the system’s design choices below or continue the conversation over in our forum.

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