News Article

3DS Browser Jumps Ship from Opera to Access NetFront

Posted by James Newton

Will it make for a better browser?

The 3DS won't get its web browser until May at the earliest, as you'll have read in our Nintendo 3DS FAQ, but we do at least know what'll power the machine's web experience.

Unlike previous Nintendo browsers, it won't be an Opera-based browser on the go, with Japanese newspaper Nikkei reporting the browser will be powered by Access's NetFront technology.

PlayStation gamers will be familiar with NetFront as it powers the PlayStation 3 and PSP browsers, but the latest version of the browser supports HTML5 and Flash with a plug-in – could we see these two head to the 3DS's web browser?

[via negativeworld.org]

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User Comments (52)

TeeJay

#1

TeeJay said:

I really hope this new browser will let me see Youtube videos, and navigate the web at a tolerable speed, unlike the DSi's Opera.

Robo-goose

#2

Robo-goose said:

If this thing has flash, then I'll be ecstatic. I'm going to go on youtube to see if any Japanese dudes have posted videos of themselves watching videos on youtube.
Also, videos.

pixelman

#3

pixelman said:

Oh my gosh. HTML5? If only it were more suited to game development... You could freely develop touch-based 3DS games. It's a nightmare right now though, sadly. :(

warioswoods

#4

warioswoods said:

I brought this up in the forums last evening, but with only the one source, I'm still skeptical. If it is true, and it certainly may be, I'm not particularly excited about it.

Opera was actually very impressive for what it could do on a machine with as little general power as the DSi (gaming power =//= general app power and memory needed for the complexity of the web). It's quite usable on the DSi, and I've often looked up a odd question that came to me while playing a game, or looked up a FAQ, with ease and relative quickness.

Contrast that with the terribly slow performance of NetFront's browsers on devices that have plenty of power to spare, and it doesn't inspire much confidence. Opera has proven themselves to understand small devices with limited resources (and to have a smooth UI). NetFront has proven nothing thus far.

TeeJay

#5

TeeJay said:

@ Robo-goose

It would be impossible to find Japanese dudes watching Youtube on their 3DS because none of the 3DS's currently have the web browser. Nintendo will release it for free in the e-Shop sometime in May.

Victoria

#6

Victoria said:

I was hoping there might be more info as to what the difference are. Comparing it to a PSP isn't helpful if you've never used one (like me) :)
Keep us posted.

NGpenguin

#7

NGpenguin said:

its fine with me, as long as i can watch you-tube videos, and have a better paced browser. :)

The_Fox

#9

The_Fox said:

With all the net enabled phones out there I have to admit I'm a little curious as to how many used the DSi to access the web.

JumpmanZ

#10

JumpmanZ said:

The PSPs browser is terrible and the PS3s is worse. I use Opera on my two Macs, my Wii, and my DSi and it works great. However, if I can watch 3D YouTube on my 3DS, all is forgiven.

SMW

#11

SMW said:

While I am sad to not see Opera involved, I doubt that I'd use my 3DS to browse the web anyway. I've already got many browsers nowadays with Opera on my PC, Wii and Android and PlanetWeb on my Dreamcast. :P

SuperPeach

#12

SuperPeach said:

I'm not sure if I'm happy or upset to hear this... If it can use tinychat though I'd be very pleased.

TeeJay

#14

TeeJay said:

I'd like have multiple tabs in the browser. Is that asking for too much?

thanos316

#15

thanos316 said:

i never downloaded operate for my dsi. i used it on my wii and it was fine.. maybe i might have to look into opera for my dsi. but i hope this new web browser works without any problems.

motang

#16

motang said:

Not a fan of NetFront, and I would rather have Opera back on the 3DS. That being said, if the browser does everything as it suppose to, then it really doesn't matter.

Hardy83

#17

Hardy83 said:

It won't have flash, the 3DS can't handle it. Heck the PS3 has trouble with it on some sites.

HTML5 I can see however.

Pod

#18

Pod said:

I really like the Opera on Wii, and they have been good about keeping it updated for use with YouTube and other flash content, but it is becoming painfully obvious how little RAM the white wonder has.

With even less RAM in the 3DS, I wouldn't count on good YouTube support, but you never know.

Azaris

#19

Azaris said:

I like psp browser because unlike wii dsi you can download stuff like music and videos directly from the browser if we could get that plus flash support and a good ui then it'd be awesome

grumblebuzzz

#21

grumblebuzzz said:

I just hope it's at least usable for game walkthroughs and such, since the suspended play feature is one that I'm excited about. If you can't stop a game in mid-frustration and look up the solution, what's the point in having the feature?

DarkKirby

#22

DarkKirby said:

I hope Nintendo has learned that internet browsers without Flash are garbage.

They didn't seem to learn that region locking only holds back sales in the long run.

If you don't want people importing you release games with closer release dates, not 6 months - 1 year separate releases.

1080ike

#25

1080ike said:

I wouldn't know about the browser, since I don't have a PSP/PS3, but Opera's done a pretty good job so far with what they've been using.

GC-161

#29

GC-161 said:

If I remember correctly, the PS3 browser was not originally designed for a home console but was made for the PSP in mind. So, that could explain why it was a bit flawed on the PS3.

ETLN

#31

ETLN said:

I hope its better the PS3 and PSP browser as they are both terrible. They are slow, don't render pages correctly and crash quite often.

Capt_N

#32

Capt_N said:

Whatever browser chosen, the programming co./group who designed it should support it quite frequently w/ updates. Gaming devices, & mobile phones aren't meant to browse the web anyway. It's just become a standard feature companies include in such devices, because one company started doing it, so others had to start including it to compete.

Further, I can not speak for NetFront, but Opera is well known to be a bare-bones browser. I was not, nor am not, impressed w/ the Wii's Opera.

NintyMan

#35

NintyMan said:

I would love to watch Youtube on the 3DS, but I would still be happy if the browser was at least faster.

Token_Girl

#36

Token_Girl said:

Excited about them dumping Opera...until I heard they were using the company that did the PSP/PS3. Opera's simple, but clean. Flash/Html5 support is nice, but I'm guessing my surfing's going to stay on my iPhone.

komicturtle

#37

komicturtle said:

@10

I used the DSi Browser frequently. Especially if I'm too lazy to turn on my computer for it to boot up just to see one thing that I needed to get to quickly. I do wish Opera was back on 3DS with enhancements...

Robo-goose

#38

Robo-goose said:

"Wait, if we get flash on the 3DS... I CAN WATCH HOMESTAR RUNNER ON THE GO! Awesome."
You watch that stuff? You totally rock now.

Peznaze

#40

Peznaze said:

Oh.. crud. The PS3 browser is nigh-unusable. I prefer Opera on the Wii, in all its gimped glory to the PS3 browser... Here's hoping Flash and HTML5 make it into the 3DS browser, or I'll be sticking with a DSi for quick browsing.

WolfRamHeart

#42

WolfRamHeart said:

The PS3 web browser is simply awful. It is incredibly slow and it crashes my system every time I use it. Hopefully the 3DS browser will be nothing like the one on the PS3. Anyway, I will probably just keep my browsing to my computer and leave the gaming to the 3DS.

KrazyKain

#43

KrazyKain said:

heres a thought... if the 3ds will have flash, and therefore youtube support...will youtube add a new mode for its 3d videos to watch them on the 3ds with ease?

Crunc

#44

Crunc said:

The only function which I care about, and I'm worried it doesn't have it, is the ability to log into a wifi access point and then carry that internet connection over to a game, as opposed to how it work on the DSi now - as soon as you leave the browser the connection is lost. I hope NintendoLife can shed some light on this.

cheapogamer4life

#45

cheapogamer4life said:

Flash and HTML5 would be great, but I won't get excited about these features until their confirmed by Nintendo.

Kurona

#47

Kurona said:

I think it's another way for web pages to display video.

I hope the browser doesn't suck, because I like the Opera browser for DSi. It's relatively fast (as long as you go to texty websites) and it's portable. I'd been fine with Netfront, if it wasn't for the fact apparently their web browser sucks. Now I'm worried. :P

Darkmire

#51

Darkmire said:

As much as people complain about not having flash on the DSi's browser, I think it was a really good browser and thankfully now a lot of people know what a loss it is to lose Opera. My crappy Blackberry Curve lives and dies by the awesome Opera browser I use for it (version 4.2 I think, not the bloated version 5). They make great, user-friendly mobile browsers.

Raptor3873

#52

Raptor3873 said:

That means I can watch Red vs Blue online! That also means I can watch Youtube online! That also means... WAR ROCK!!!

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