News Article

Japan's Minna No Theater Channel Closes Its Curtains

Posted by Trevor Chan

It's a wrap for the WiiWare video rental service

Since its launch back in January 2009, Japan's Minna No Theater (Everyone's Wii Theater) service allowed users to stream rented video content on their Wii consoles, and half a year later, the service got a boost when homegrown and international films were added to the selection of various television shows.

So it's unfortunate to see that the video-on-demand service will no longer be receiving improvements and additions, instead, the service will actually be terminated later this year. The Wii Theater website states that users will no longer be able to download the channel from 30th April.

Kanagawa-based Fujisoft, the company behind the VOD service has stated that the service will stop this October, apparently because of increasing competition from PCs and Internet-connected televisions, and smartphones.

[via kotaku.com]

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User Comments (26)

RaylaxStaff

#2

Raylax said:

It's April 1st in Japan. Taking everything with a dollop of salt.

bboy2970

#3

bboy2970 said:

Closed before it even made it to America.....tragic. It ddoesn't upset me too much though since Netflix streaming on Wii is awesome!

bboy2970

#4

bboy2970 said:

@Raylax: Well that wouldn't really be a great April Fools joke......Usually April fools jokes in the game industry have to do with really awesome things you never thought would happen.

RaylaxStaff

#5

Raylax said:

Hm, idk. GOG (Good Old Games) did a fake shut-down which drummed up a ton of exposure when it turned out it was actually rebuilding their whole service and getting a ton of new partners. And the Megaman Universe cancellation (see Other Gaming on the forums) being cancelled out of nowhere on Apr 1st smells a bit funny, too.

irken004

#6

irken004 said:

@Raylax Supposedly Sony Online Entertainment is shut down/firing over 200 employees too now. Is April Fool's day even big in Japan?

RaylaxStaff

#7

Raylax said:

@6: Well, I know Pokémon tends to do something for April Fool's - once claiming to have moved their headquarters to the Artic or something a couple of years ago.

HeroOfTime007

#8

HeroOfTime007 said:

@5.
WHOA? GOG didn't shut down for real? I honestly thought that no DRM thing was the death of them...

RaylaxStaff

#10

Raylax said:

Of course, given recent events in Japan, and the subsequent impact on their economy, all of them could very well not be April Fools at all.

Bankai

#13

Bankai said:

Given it's about 5 am on April 1 in Japan it's unlikely this news was announced on April 1 and therefore unlikely to be a joke.

Sneaker13

#17

Sneaker13 said:

Yeah on April first I don't take anything serious. Just like Europe getting no WiiWare this week. Hahaha, funny joke Nintendo.

EDIT: Wait ... ... ... :(.

Token_Girl

#20

Token_Girl said:

That's a shame for them. Luckily Netflix is still doing well (though if companies start metering internet like AT&T is trying to do, it won't last forever).

wanderlustwarrior

#22

wanderlustwarrior said:

Charging per data usage. Not just on phones, on home connections too, soon. It was announced over a week ago, so that's not a joke.

MeloMan

#25

MeloMan said:

@ 24 You will be able eventually when the service becomes available... likely starting with the May system update, but possibly further just after that.

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