As blogged a couple weeks ago, the Nintendo Wii will support Web browsing via Opera, with Nintendo’s Perrin Kaplan suggesting that users would “download an Opera browser using Wii points and surf the web”; since then, the story’s gotten even sweeter. The Norway firm behind Opera just announced that their browser will be free for Wii owners until next June.
Videogamesblogger even posted a cool YouTube demo of the Wii-powered Web in action, while reporting that “[t]he Wii remote control will also be an integral part of browsing, allowing users to intuitively control the Web with their Wii remotes.” This is confirmation to a specific point I had speculated on earlier, that the wand-like Wii control could help usher in a new era of the Web as a medium, moving beyond the mouse-and-keyboard controls that have been the standard for over 10 years, and toward something like a 3D Web.
(Why just point and click on an Internet that looks like disparate pages of data, when you can wave your wand to explore a Net that looks more like, well, a videogame? And wouldn’t a generation raised on games prefer that over a PC-driven Web, anyway?) Nintendo has promised more information on Wii’s Web capabilities closer to the console’s November launch, and I’ll be waiting with bated breath to see how much (or how little) the console drives the future of Web development.