This week, Nintendo have announced the Nintendo Network for the 3DS and the forthcoming Wii U.
This is what Nintendo said during the briefing:
As those of you who have enjoyed playing “Mario Kart 7” that we launched late last year should know, its online competition mode includes the system called “Communities.” Each player can create his or her own online “Community” and decide the rules and conditions of the races to be conducted there, and anyone who enters the designated “Community number,” can join to enjoy the matches there. With that system, the company is offering a new kind of network service, which is different from the network services Nintendo has been offering under the name of Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection.
For “Mario Kart 7,” we have already started using as the name of this new network service…
…“Nintendo Network” Service
The Nintendo Network service is our network platform which will cover the Nintendo 3DS and the Wii U.
Unlike Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection, which has been focused upon specific functionalities and concepts, we are aiming to establish a platform where various services available through the network for our consumers shall be connected via Nintendo Network service so that the company can make comprehensive proposals to consumers.
For example, competitions and communication among users, as well as the sales of digital content, will be covered within the Nintendo Network.
For the digital sales of the content, we are also considering the future possibility of digital distribution of packaged software, which is often referred to as “software download sales.” This concept was built into the design of the Nintendo 3DS, and we already have the necessary infrastructure. We will prepare the same infrastructure for the Wii U. However, we have not decided the concrete timing of when we will start it. The decision must be made by taking into consideration such factors as the relationship with the wholesalers and retailers, and the best way to be embraced by consumers, as well as the environment surrounding the market and consumers, such as the required memory capacity on consumers’ SD memory cards. However, as an option for the future, the significance of this business field will increase.
Also for the Wii U, we are planning to introduce a personal account system compatible with Nintendo Network. With this, for example, the ease of using a video game system when the hardware is shared by multiple family members, which has been a challenge we needed to tackle, shall be improved, and we will also be able to construct and offer the system by combining a variety of different services and content.
This looks like it could be rather interesting – more news when we get it.