Skip to main content

Weekend Roundup: Nintendo Wii U, Wii Mini, Samsung Galaxy Camera and Cyber Monday

Nintendo Wii U

After much anticipation, the Wii U launched in the UK this week, but unlike the original Wii, you won’t need to beg borrow and steal to get Nintendo’s latest console before Christmas. In fact, pretty much every online and high street retailer seems to have the Wii U in stock this weekend – whether that’s to do with our era of austerity or whether consumers are waiting to see how the new console shapes up, though, is anyone’s guess.

It’s also quite interesting that this time around, Nintendo has chosen to launch its new console in the US and the UK before it’s officially available in Japan!

There’s no denying that Nintendo is trying to move video games on again, like it did with the original Wii. Rather than playing the raw horsepower and photorealistic graphics cards that are favoured by Sony and Microsoft, Nintendo has once again created a console that’s all about interaction, and new forms of interaction at that.

As well as the motion control that made the original Wii such a success, the Wii U comes with a tablet-like companion screen, complete with game-pad controls. Not only can the Wii Pad be used to play Wii U games when someone else is monopolising the TV, you can also use it in multi-player games to either help or hinder your friends.

If you want to get the full lowdown read our in-depth Nintendo Wii U review, along with our roundup of some of the best Wii U launch games. If you have £300 burning a hole in your pocket, it might be worth investing in Mario and Zelda’s new home.

Nintendo Wii Mini

As if the launch of the Wii U wasn’t enough, Nintendo has also revealed the Wii Mini – a smaller and even more affordable version of the original motion controlled wonder. Bizarrely though, Nintendo has confirmed that the Wii Mini will be sold exclusively in Canada over the Christmas period.

We’re not sure why the Canadians have been chosen above all others, but they’re certainly getting a good deal. With the Wii Mini costing only $99 Canadian, that equates to roughly £62, meaning that the Wii Mini doesn’t cost much more than a premium game!

There’s no definite launch date for the Nintendo Wii Mini in the UK, but if you’ve been holding off on treating yourself or your kids to a Wii, a deal like this will be hard to resist.

Black Friday & Cyber Monday

Okay, so theoretically Black Friday wasn’t this week, but Cyber Monday was, and the results from both only started to take shape earlier this week. Figures suggest that the all important $1bn milestone was passed on Black Friday for the first time ever.

But even that record breaking Black Friday was eclipsed by Cyber Monday earlier this week, where US consumers spent in excess of $2bn, snapping up all the electronic goodies they could get their paws on.

Does that mean that we’re pulling ourselves out of the depths of recession? Or is it simply an indicator that when money is tight people are waiting for the best deals before parting with their cash? Either way, retailers in the US certainly got a much needed shot in the arm, while savvy online stores in the UK didn’t do too badly either.

Samsung Android camera reviewed

Samsung announced its Android-powered Galaxy Camera back in September at IFA, but we’ve had to wait a little while to find out whether it lived up to the hype.

There’s no denying that the Samsung Galaxy Camera EK-GC100 looks the part. With its stunning 4.8in display and Android 4.1 Jelly Bean operating system, the Galaxy Camera looks every bit as feature packed and versatile as a high-end smartphone.

On top of its Android credentials, this camera also gets a 21x optical zoom, 16-megapixel sensor and 1080p video recording. And of course there’s the Wi-Fi and 3G connectivity, allowing you to share your photos as soon as you’ve taken them, via any Android app.

Read our full review of the Samsung Galaxy Camera EK-GC100 and find out whether a camera with an integrated smartphone is a better solution than a smartphone with an integrated camera.

Riyad has been entrenched in technology publishing for more years than he cares to remember, having staffed and edited some of the largest and most successful IT magazines in the UK. In 2003 he joined forces with Hugh Chappell to create They built TR into the UK’s market leading technology publication before selling the title to IPC Media / Time Warner in 2007. As Editorial Director at Net Communities, Riyad will be helping to develop the publishing portfolio, making IT Pro Portal the best publication it can be.