/>
X
Innovation

Wii U controller packs in tablet-like features

Nintendo has launched a new console that includes a 6.2-inch touchscreen controller alongside traditional hardware controller buttons.
Written by Ben Woods, Contributor on

Nintendo has launched a new console that includes a 6.2-inch touchscreen controller alongside traditional hardware controller buttons.

The controller can provide a mirror of the display connected to the console or can display information not shown on screen. Nintendo revealed the device at the E3 gaming conference in Los Angeles on Tuesday.
Nintendo Wii U touchscreen wireless controller
In addition to displaying or augmenting information displayed on the main TV screen, the controller comes with a gyroscope for motion control features, rumble capability, a forward-facing camera, microphone and speakers. It can also be used as a standalone web browser or as a magnifier for web pages displayed on the main screen.

Nintendo said that as well as providing basic camera functionality, the camera can be used for video calling in conjunction with the microphone and speakers.

The screen on the Wii U controller — which is currently of unknown resolution — does not have its own GPU, instead it receives a video stream from the main console; meaning that it needs to stay in wireless range of the unit to function.

Few hardware details of the console itself were revealed during the announcement, however, in a separate but related announcement, IBM said it will provide the microprocessors for the new system.

The company said it plans to produce "millions of chips for Nintendo" featuring its Silicon on Insulator (SOI) technology. The custom chip will be made at IBM's semiconductor development and manufacturing facility in East Fishkill, New York, the company added.

Image Credit: Nintendo

Editorial standards