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Nintendo Expands DS Player

Kyoto, Japan – Nintendo announced here that it plans to introduce an Internet browser for its popular Nintendo DS portable game player, according to reports from Japan.

The browser software, which is being developed by Norway’s Opera Software, will be available in Japan this June. Delivery dates for overseas markets were not announced.

The browser, which will leverage the players’ Wi-Fi capability, will allow users to write in search words on its touch screen. In addition both of unit’s dual screens will be able to view Web pages.

At the same time, Nintendo announced it will offer in Japan a tuner card and antenna that will enable the portable player to receive new digital TV broadcasts in Japan.

No plans were announced to sell a similar add-on overseas, however.

The company reported that the hand-held game player has sold 6 million units in Japan, since its December 2004 launch there.

Nintendo expects the added functions to help boost sales to 10 million units in Japan this year.

Global sales of the Nintendo DS were said to be 13 million. The system first launched in the U.S. in November 2004.

The company also said it is planning to launch in Japan this March a slimmed down Nintendo DS Lite player that will sell for about $143. DS Lite players will be available in white, and navy or pale blue.

Other software said to be under development for the DS is a mobile dictionary with English or Chinese translation.