Monday, January 5, 2009

Nintendo to take on broadcasters with Wii TV

In its relentless quest for world living-room domination, Nintendo is preparing to take on the might of the world's biggest broadcasters by launching its own television channel.

Viewable by anyone with a Wii games console and an internet connection, the Wiinoma channel is expected to deliver a family- oriented blizzard of cartoons, “brain-training” quizzes, cookery, educational and other lifestyle shows: all of it original content produced exclusively for Nintendo.

Broadcasts in Japan should begin in the spring and the console maker is considering international expansion that would lead to the channel being available in the homes of about 40million Wii owners by the end of 2009.

Nintendo's move into the “harvesting phase” of the Wii console has come far more quickly than many expected. Koki Shiraishi, of Daiwa Securities, said the television channel would allow the company to exploit the huge existing base of Wii users to make the critical shift towards content-based revenues.

The launch of the TV channel - effectively a video-on-demand download service - will initially take the form of a partnership between Nintendo and Dentsu, Japan's largest advertising agency. The agency will produce the programmes and sell advertising.

However, Nintendo's success as a broadcaster is hardly guaranteed: the company has attempted to use previous generations of its consoles to deliver non-games content but every scheme has ended in failure. The company's big Christmas in-house title, Wii Music, has flopped - bringing to an end a long run of success in the current games market.

Read Full Article @ Times Online