Nintendo announces features for new 3DS system

Nintendo wowed everyone at this year’s E3 with the announcement of the Nintendo 3DS, the next evolution of their handheld system that will provide a 3D experience without glasses.

The public has been excited and perplexed ever since – news outlets say that the technology is something you have to experience – but Nintendo recently held a press conference where they discussed the final features and pricing (for Japan, anyways)of the product . Here’s how it breaks down:

  • The 3DS will have both a motion sensor and a gyro-sensor. That means that the system will know where it is in space, and where you are in space, putting it on par with the iPhone and the Playstation 3’s controller.
  • The set comes bundled with a charger, charging dock, stylus, and a 2GB SD card. The nice surprise here is the SD card, because it means that the device will have external storage, opening the door for picture and video sharing, plus more space for downloadable games. Of course, this would be useless without…
  • An SD card slot which will accompany the game cartridge slot. While the cartridge slot seems like a given, its very important to note that the 3DS will have backwards compatibility. When Playstation got rid of the disk slot on the PSP Go, sales went from bad to dismal because players didn’t want to give up their old games.
  • There are two 0.3 megapixel cameras on the outside of the device, and one on the inside. This will allow the 3DS to take 3D pictures, and could even allow for 3D video chat.
  • We’re looking at a release date of February 26 in Japan and the system should be available in the US in March. The 3DS will set you back ¥25,000 in Japan, so expect to pay around $300 for it (no official price set for the US yet, but we’ll keep you updated).

Why it’s important

Nintendo beat everyone to the motion-controlled gaming market, and it looks like they’re going to revolutionize 3D too. Because, if you think about it, this is one of the only platforms where 3D really works: on a device that’s built for single-person use where the 3D effects actually add to the experience. Plus, you can’t go wrong with getting rid of those annoying glasses.

Expect to see a lot of innovative games come out of this new feature. Will it secure Nintendo’s dominance over Apple in the portable gaming market? My Magic 8-Ball says ask again later. In the mean time, check out the 3DS premiere video from E3 2010. It’s an over-dramatized and potentially traumatic tale of asian men being eaten by their gaming devices. Enjoy!

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