Nintendo struggling with Wii U hardware

September 9, 2011

Nintendo is reportedly struggling to get its Wii U hardware to work properly. But is this the normal development issues or something inherently more serious?

Hardware manufacture is a fine art but not an exact science. Which is why companies can sometimes get it very, very right, and other times get it very, very wrong. In terms of games consoles, this tends to come in waves. Sony triumphed with the original Playstation and PS2, but has had to fight much harder to make the PS3 a success against the Wii and the Xbox 360.

Nintendo has had a good run, with the Wii and DS dominating the home and handheld markets for the past few years. But it’s struggling to up its game to the next level, with the 3DS not performing at all as expected, and the Wii U receiving a mixed reception upon its unveiling at E3 2011. And if reports from French site 01Net (via Kotaku) are to be believed, things are going from bad to worse.

A source claims Nintendo is experiencing multiple problems with the Wii U hardware. That the design architecture was “rushed out the door,” that the current chipset isn’t up to scratch, and that the wireless connection between the main console and the 6-inch touchscreen controller-come-tablet is so flaky that third-party developers are having to use tethered connections instead.

Nintendo is trying desperately to solve these issues, but daily firmware updates aren’t exactly helping the developers as they attempt to extract the best out of the hardware. Nintendo is clearly weighing up hardware costs vs. hardware performance, because the Wii has set a precedent for the company to offer a cheaper alternative than its rivals.

The ultimate upshot of this is likely to be the release date of the Wii U being pushed back from June 2012 to later in the year. Too late and the all-important holiday season could be missed, and Sony and Microsoft may also announce successors to the PS3 and Xbox 360 in the interim. Which would further hinder sales.

8 Responses to “Nintendo struggling with Wii U hardware”

  1. MAK:

    Good. I dont want to see nintendo anymore. Not until they go back to their original ways.
    Theyve done enough damage this generation, and in many ways.
    Not to mention, they turned into bigger money suckers than M$.
    Nintendo has all the sales in the world and they cant spend a dime on hardware development??
    Just like how Activision has the best selling game, but never invests in improving.

  2. ncaissie:

    I wish Nintendo would start over with the Wii u and just make a nice console without the fuckin gimiky shit. I remember the first time I discovered jumping on the turtle while coming down the stairs gave you umpteen lives. The NES and SNES were awesome consoles in their day. I just want next Gen graphics on a next Gen machine. And I don’t want to sit on my head to play it either.

    If they came out with a proper next Gen I would buy it. I don’t want this motion shit any more.

  3. CarlB:

    Success has a way of making manufacturers lazy or just not giving a damn about what the fans want. Sony let success go to their head when the launched this gen, then quickly found out they had to adapt or die (thankfully they did).

    Now Nintendo looks to be making even worse mistakes next gen, and M$ has already let what success they’ve had go to their head. If Sony continues to bring extra value over the competition, I hope they kick the shit out of Nintendo and M$ both, because they will have earned it without gimmicks (Ninty) or underhanded business dealings (M$).

  4. jojo29:

    Fucking Carlb…

    Nothing more to say….thats the exact 2 paragraphs i would have written…can’t even add to it but i’ll try..

    Sony did fucking adapt, and quick…they saw their dirty arrogance ( <– which i distinctly called out, despite being a Sony fanboy ) pretty much handed MS the next gen, and were quick as heck to adapt, letting go Ken Kuturgi and Phil Harison…

    Thank goodness for that, as both Ninty and MS are heading into completely opposite gaming directions, yet BOTH are not listening or seeing that their fans really don't like that direction….

    Sony listens to their fanbase, aka $$

  5. Ivan_PSP:

    WoW Nintendo is so beyond cheap this is just too much. Soo Wii U is being made by everything cheap nice to know. Nintendo has never made a good console with the Wii they just got lucky that and found enough idiots to buy that piece of junk. LMFAO now third party developers are not even going to care or even look at that console. And I’m pretty sure Sony won’t be announcing anything related to PS4 for a while maybe they will say something in the fall of 2013, I see PS4 coming out in 2015 at best. As Microsoft they got no hope.

  6. Godless:

    I’m not so sure about MS IVAN, Yes they are going in the wrong direction for most of the current hardcore fan base, and if they don’t change, they will loose them, but I think MS are aiming to take the casual market (much bigger demographic)from Nintendo, because it will be like taking candy from a baby.

    Nintendo need to step up the hardware, because both Sony & MS will knock them clean out of the ball park.

    Consumers want to be wowed by the hardware, Nintendo will give us new versions of the same shit they’ve been churning out for the last 20 on a console that only just meets the current gen performance. It will not be able to compete against what MS & Sony will do.

    I think in its current form, the next gen Nintendo will fail badly

    I see MS taking Nintendo’s market, with a focus on being the family console with some hard core gaming thrown in. Whether it’s enough to make hardcore gamers buy it is the big question.

    I think the playing field will be much more level next gen for the hardware side of things for Sony & MS,with both using very similar architecture, maybe even a blu ray compatible drive on the xbox. it will come down to brand loyalty & games, and for these reasons I think Sony will have the advantage, so long as they have full backward compatibility with PS3 & launch the PS4 at around the same time as the next Xbox and don’t give it a years head start.

    I think if Nintendo want to stay in the running, they maybe need to completely re-think the Wii U.

  7. Ivan_PSP:

    Godless:
    I can finally agree Wii U. I was actually hoping to get Wii U but after seen the controller and the sames we have on PS3 and Xbox 360 is not even worth it. Still no Blu-ray or HDD wtf is this crap. One stupid controller Nintendo has always made bad console.

    Microsoft will kill Nintendo if they buy more developers like Sony does. I can’t wait to see Sony monopolizing the video game world. Look at 3DS and PlayStation Vita the difference is on a massive scale.

  8. CarlB:

    “I can’t wait to see Sony monopolizing the video game world.”

    I can. The reason they are so great and improving so much is because they do not have a monopoly.

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