Fact Sheet: Wii U - 1080p HD Confirmed, No BluRay

Nintendo embraces HD in 2012

After announcing the Wii U earlier today Nintendo has now revealed some details of the hardware behind the new system.

As expected the console will be a full HD console with 1080p/720p output via HDMI, it will also feature a multi-core PowerPC processor which may be comparable with Xbox 360. As always Nintendo has tried to stay away from processing figures, but here's what we have so far:

Launches:
2012

Size:
Approximately 1.8 inches tall, 6.8 inches wide and 10.5 inches long.

New Controller:
The new controller incorporates a 6.2-inch, 16:9 touch screen and traditional button controls, including two analog Circle Pads. This combination removes the traditional barriers between games, players and the TV by creating a second window into the video game world. The rechargeable controller includes a Power button, Home
button, +Control Pad, A/B/X/Y buttons, L/R buttons and ZL/ZR buttons. It includes a built-in accelerometer and gyroscope, rumble feature, camera, a microphone, stereo speakers, a sensor strip and a stylus.

Other Controls:
Up to four Wii Remote™ (or Wii Remote Plus) controllers can be connected at once. The new console supports all Wii™ controllers and input devices, including the Nunchuk™ controller, Classic Controller™, Classic Controller Pro™ and Wii Balance Board™.

Media:
A single self-loading media bay will play 12-centimeter proprietary high-density optical discs for the new console, as well as 12-centimeter Wii optical discs.

Video Output:
Supports 1080p, 1080i, 720p, 480p and 480i. Compatible cables include HDMI, component, S-video and composite.

Audio Output:
Uses AV Multi Out connector. Six-channel PCM linear output through HDMI.

Storage:
The console will have internal flash memory, as well as the option to expand its memory using either an SD memory card or an external USB hard disk drive.

CPU:
IBM Power®-based multi-core microprocessor.

Other:
Four USB 2.0 connector slots are included. The new console is backward compatible with Wii games and Wii accessories.

So there you have it, pretty much what we would expect. The processing power and graphics should have a huge improvement over Wii, the lack of Blu-ray means the system will certainly focus on games and games alone. It's clear Nintendo aren't interested in competing with Apple TV and other home-media devices. Additionally the proprietary disc format may help Nintendo battle piracy once again on the home console, and the ability to add external hard drives is a welcome plus too.