There are still no hard-and-fast facts about how the 3DS's shop will function, but several recent interviews with Satoru Iwata have revealed a potential sea change in thinking at Nintendo's highest level: as well as Mr Iwata's post-E3 comments that the console could support video chat, a discussion with the company's investors has revealed a little about the thinking behind the machine's digital distribution strategy.
Whereas current Nintendo consoles predominantly rely on the consumer actively seeking out new content by loading up the Wii Shop Channel or DSi Shop, Mr Iwata states that the 3DS will see the content begin to seek out the user. Mr Iwata states that currently consumers find content and "pull" it to themselves, whereas the 3DS will allow Nintendo to "push" information and content out to the device. This is not unlike Wii's WiiConnect24 service, which allows Nintendo to send out advertisements to promote certain games, but such functionality has not been seen in a Nintendo handheld device before.
Mr Iwata also talks about the potential for consumers to customise these online features, though in typically cryptic style, stating that the exact details have yet to be nailed down at Nintendo HQ.
All this talk about the 3DS's online features is certainly cheering for many fans eager to find out exactly what connection services will be available in the new machine. It certainly seems Nintendo is planning such innovations very carefully, so watch this space over the coming weeks and months as the machine continues to take three-dimensional shape.