Nintendo has announced a release of its popular touch-screen handheld game system the “DSi” in Japan on November 1st for ¥18,900, ($179/€130), everywhere else sometime in 2009. The most celebrated feature of the DSi is its dual-camera setup. One is mounted inside the clamshell, and the other on the outside. With these 640 x 480 “eyes” come the requisite photo manipulation tools, the roots of which Nintendo included with the Game Boy Camera more than ten years ago. Pictures can be merged together, drawn upon, or distorted.
The screens have increased in size from 3” to 3.25”, and the chassis, although becoming marginally bigger overall, has dropped in girth from 21.5mm to 18.9mm. This narrowing of profile is because the GBA slot has been replaced with a side-mounted SD memory slot, a 0.3 megapixel camera, is thinner (no GBA slot), and has improved audio.
One of these is the audio player, which naturally is delivered with Nintendo’s playful attitude, providing the option to alter the playback speed more than 100%. Another new addition where expandable memory is integral is the “DSi Shop,” similar to the Wii Shop Channel, where users will be able to purchase downloadable content on a points system. A built-in Web browser is expected to round out the offering.