News Article

Video: Wii U Menu Speed Upgrade Cuts Waiting Time By More Than Half

Posted by Damien McFerran

Nintendo shows off forthcoming performance enhancement

We all know that the Wii U isn't the fastest system when it comes to navigating the main user interface, but Nintendo is aware of this fact and is issuing two software updates this spring and summer which will cut down waiting times.

The company has released a video which shows just how much quicker things will be. In the video, a comparison is shown between the current Wii U software and the upcoming update. Dropping back to the home menu from a game currently takes around 20 seconds — the updated system cuts that down to a more bearable 8 seconds.

That's still more time that we'd ideally like to spend waiting, but an impressive upgrade regardless. Will this go some way to making you happy as a Wii U owner? Or were you hoping to see more? Post a comment to tell us.

[via youtube.com]

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User Comments (95)

Geonjaha

#2

Geonjaha said:

That's a substantial improvement, and will prove useful when I actually get more games to play on the system. 8 seconds is fine, but if they improve it even more than that I'd be impressed. :3

DarkNinja9

#4

DarkNinja9 said:

eh it still seemed slow from what i saw on the video but better then nothing i guess what im wondering is will this be for all apps and games =/

what im wondering more is when we getting a new longer lasting battery least here in the US

WiiULoveSquid

#7

WiiULoveSquid said:

Not the kind of comparison vid I ever thought I'd be watching lol.

The improvement is welcome and looks great. That 8 seconds will seem very negligible after I've gotten to the desired menu. But I'm full of all kinds of patience lol.

Hunter-D

#10

Hunter-D said:

Even though the new loading time isn't amazing, it's still a massive improvement.

McHaggis

#11

McHaggis said:

This looks like a great improvement. The current load times are a little annoying, but at least they're trying to do something about it. What I'd really like to see is the System Menu shown in game so you can quickly switch between running software beyond the browser and eShop. In the meantime, though, this cuts down the annoyance when trying to switch games.

CountEkkiM

#12

CountEkkiM said:

i checked this from miiverse! very good speed, now we only need more games like metroid, castlevania and zelda...

MadAdam81

#14

MadAdam81 said:

I only had loading issues in the last couple of weeks, forcing me to use the "English only" setting as I was waiting a few minutes, but it's still slower than it used to be, and I have no idea why my console got the issue after it had been fine for ages.
Waiting 20 seconds is fine for me, when I only have to wait once or twice when playing for a few hours, but I won't complain when the new update arrives.

snax007

#16

snax007 said:

Seems improved but still slow. I would also like to see the delay difference when navigating different system function (Miiverse, Friends list, eShop, etc) which is far more critical imo.

AG_Systems

#17

AG_Systems said:

Would like them to massively improve stability too. The unit still freezes too much for my liking, especially when exiting an app/game and returning to main menu.

fullyilly

#21

fullyilly said:

Improvement yes, but still terribly slow. Could the WiiU have the slowest menu load times ever? I'm betting so. Poor show for supposed 'next gen'.

Bluezealand

#22

Bluezealand said:

@fullyilly It's 8 seconds now, which is faster than both- PS3 and Xbox 360. Not to mention, there will be another update in summer, which will decrease loading times again.

19Robb92

#23

19Robb92 said:

@fullyilly
Definitely not. Just look at apple. Takes forever to turn of and turn on their computers/phones. That's pretty ridiculous as well.

LeonChamp

#25

LeonChamp said:

I've still not bought a Wii U, but wow ATM the OS is sooo slow!! I find that strange considering the apparent horsepower inside it!!
I'm still gonna wait a bit longer before buying one! Then it should be more stabble/quicker, cheaper to buy the premium one and hopefully some better games (Mario Kart U and Mario Galaxy 3!!)

snax007

#28

snax007 said:

@19Robb92 If your iPhone takes 8 seconds to turn on, you should contact Apple support. A cold boot of a iPhone takes longer but you are not supposed to completely turn off a iPhone/iPad since it's always in low-power sleep and can turn on (wake up) withín one second.
Besides it's a flawed comparison anyway - Wii U will now "only" take 8 seconds to leave a game and return to the dashboard. The correct comparison should be a leaving/closing a iPhone App and returning to the home screen. That takes less than one second on iPhone/iPad. People who thinks 8 seconds is anything than slow, are in denial. But better than 30 seconds - sure!

tovare

#29

tovare said:

Cool, i hope there is some improvements jumping into miiverse and back into the game as well :)

rmqkr

#30

rmqkr said:

@snax007 - what do you mean you are not supposed to turn the iphone off? Its battery is awful so obviously people want to turn it off. Why wouldn't they? And I agree. It takes forever to boot not only an iphone but also the best Android phones out there. I think in my Galaxy Nexus it takes about a minute or two, not kidding. And the Wii U starts right up it seems.

I was also amazed how fast the internet browser was. I expected it to be problematic like the Wii but it was surprisingly fast, even faster than my Chrome on my phone. Which is quite amazing. There is a problem of getting into menus but if they cut it now, then it's excellent.

Zach777

#31

Zach777 said:

So this is the spring update and there's still the summer one? I wonder if it will be down to next to nothing load times after that?

TheAdza

#32

TheAdza said:

Can't wait for this update. I don't mind the games taking a while to load, but going into settings and quitting games and going to Miiverse should be all sped up.

Great work Nintendo. Now get to work on making Miiverse available on smartphones, and 3DS, and get rid of this NNID business of being locked to a single console. Then I will be an even happier Wii U owner.

WaLzgiStaff

#34

WaLzgi said:

Maybe not menu loading times, but I remember the PS3 taking forever to load games

Bobhobob

#35

Bobhobob said:

Sweet. Now I'll only have one unbearable loading screen (I'm looking at you Lego City: Undercover)

TrueWiiMaster

#38

TrueWiiMaster said:

"Or were you hoping to see more?"
Well, that is a video of just the first update, isn't it? There will be more.

FernandoMachado

#40

FernandoMachado said:

The games are huge and sure do take loads of RAM memory space... I mean, it sure does take a little while to dump the game from the memory and load the menu. 8 seconds seems mighty fine.

bezerker99

#41

bezerker99 said:

Sweet! I plan on getting a Wii U next month so hopefully mine will already have this update out the box!!!

manic221

#43

manic221 said:

This was quick! i'm impressed now looks like it gets to the main menu way faster then my 360 does... my 360 only has 30gbs of it's 250gb HD space left so that could be factor... still i'm more then happy with 8 seconds... The loading screens didn't particularly bother before now i won't even notice them.

shake_zula

#44

shake_zula said:

As a Wii U owner I'm looking forward to this, but honestly, that video is embarrassing. The improved load time will still look unbearable to people who don't own the system, and the 'before' shot will have them feeling very happy that they never bought a Wii U. This update should have been done as quietly as possible, not with a public video highlighting a major system flaw.

manic221

#45

manic221 said:

@shake_zula If that loading time is "unbearable" these people you talk about clearly have no patience... That is really fast, about the same speed as exiting out of a game of an average to good PC... Probably a little better. Takes about the same time as my Xbox 360 probably actually a little faster the new loading screen is by no means slow.

sonicfan1373

#48

sonicfan1373 said:

The game-to-menu loading is much improved, it is not really an issue to me anymore. I hope they also improve the menu-to-game loading as well as the loading of the notifications app (although Nintendo said that one loading update will come in April and the other will come in summer, so maybe the summer one will improve the other loading issues)

eviLaTtenDant

#51

eviLaTtenDant said:

I can clearly see the difference from the screenshot. :P
Seriously though the update can't come soon enough. Will see if loading is bearable enough after it or if they'd better keep working on it.

HawkeyeWii

#52

HawkeyeWii said:

AWESOME!
Seriously yesterday I hit the home button went to the bathroom washed my hands and it still wasn't back yet lolol

DestinyMan

#53

DestinyMan said:

Honestly, I never realized the waiting was that bad.

And to think that the next update this summer will make it go even faster.

ivanmata

#54

ivanmata said:

Does anyone know when they will start selling consoles with the previous update already applied to the console (the one that takes a lot of time)? I remember reading something about it but can't find it.

Wanderhope

#56

Wanderhope said:

Much better. I am hoping for more improvements, though. My Wii U experience has been a hot mess.

JFug

#58

JFug said:

"That's still more time that we'd ideally like to spend waiting..."

Are you l*oving kidding me? You're still complaining about the time? It went from 20-30 seconds to 8! I for one am pleased by how fast it is now.

Kirk

#59

Kirk said:

I remember the good old days when Loading wasn't even something we had to worry about with our videogame consoles...

Unfortunately the advent of CD based consoles pretty destroyed that utopia.

Maybe one fine day we might able to get back to that place again...

retro_player_22

#60

retro_player_22 said:

Good, menu loading isn't a big deal to me as long as the system doesn't freeze. I know many ppl had issue about the system freezing when trying to go between the Wii & Wii U menu.

Dreamcaster-X

#62

Dreamcaster-X said:

Big improvement!!! I wonder if it will help on Miiverse launch times. They're generally not too bad but any improvement is an improvement. = )

Beta

#63

Beta said:

Wow! Impressive! It's nice touch, but I didn't really mind the loading times of anything, tbh. Also, to those who say 8 seconds is slow, not to be rude or bash you but, you're waaaay to spoiled... Seriously? Are people that impatient these days? If you're THAT bothered, do something in your 8 seconds, geez...

JFug

#64

JFug said:

When is the update that will fix system freezing? Is that the spring or summer update?

WiX

#66

WiX said:

Woah, that was fast! :O And I really mean it! I never found my Wii U to be slow (and it probably is the same time as in that video) but now that is really some lightning speed! :D

AcesHigh

#67

AcesHigh said:

This is perfectly acceptable and now comparable to their competitors. Id be satisfied with this. Id rather them now focus on other upgrades like Wii games from main menu and Wii/WiiU virtual console games on the GamePad than further speed enhancement like some here are crying about. Some people will never be satisfied.

Araknie

#68

Araknie said:

Fantastic, i hope this is also in Pikmin 3, like in LEGO City there was the 2.1.1E Update.

Beta

#69

Beta said:

@WiX Totally agree! I didn't get bothered by loading times at all, this is a big improvement for me in any case.
@AcesHigh Some people will never be satisfied.
THIS^ This soooo much!

Zodiak13

#71

Zodiak13 said:

Just for S's nad G's, I tested my 360 and PS3. My time were pS3 (11 secs.) 360 (13 secs). So this is now comparable, at least in my opinion. I did verify that all systems were current for updates 1st. I will admit the load times did annoy me, but patience is a virtue I don't have in spades.

Scary_Old_Lady

#74

Scary_Old_Lady said:

Hmm... Looking at the picture, the before picture has NSMBU 1.2.0, but on the after picture there's no version at all! :O

SCAR392

#75

SCAR392 said:

This way faster than it was, and loads faster than PS3 and Xbox 360 considering this is a new gen console. All the complaining must really hate their other modern devices beyond comprehension if they still don't think this is fast in comparison, and is a failed attempt overall.
iPhone vs. Wii U power on from COMPLETELY off is the right comparison, not sleep mode. Compare 3DS and iPhone sleep mode. That would be an actual comparison.

grimbldoo

#77

grimbldoo said:

@Schroedus #36
Right? I was wondering where the 8 seconds were. And it's almost as fast as the 3DS, I don't remember anybody complaining about those load times.

Giygas_95

#81

Giygas_95 said:

I haven't been bothered by the load times, but I won't complain if they become shorter!

hamispink

#82

hamispink said:

It's much better, but still too slow. with my PS3, it isn't exactly instant to get back to the menu(it is instant, but it takes the icons a few seconds to start loading in), but that came out over 6 years ago. With phones able to jump between apps less than a second, and even the vita being lightning fast compared to this, its hard to accept this speed. The Wii U, hardware and operating system wise, is most certainly not "next gen".

renaryuugufan92

#83

renaryuugufan92 said:

the load times never really bothered me, the random freezing every now and then does tho~ :X

anything we hope for in the upcoming updates? personally i want to see a feature that Iwata told us we'd have last year, and that is the ability to download software while the system is in stand-by a.k.a turned off~

also since long downloads present the risk of brick due to lose of power (in my case the 6 hour download of NFS: most wanted U i went through a few days ago had my heart pumping..) i think Nintendo should release additional OS software which would in theory allow temporary backups of important system data in case of a power-loss, of course this last part is a personal preference i'd like to see, idk about anyone else here~

Metal_Slugger

#84

Metal_Slugger said:

@hamispink I agree any wait time makes you feel like you got a clunker, or really old hardware. Better is better though I will be happy with that update for now.

tanookisuit

#86

tanookisuit said:

That's a hell of a nice start, 6seconds I think I counted while the other is notably high as we all know. That would make me happy as I just shut it down now as I want nothing to do with going in and out of that menu at all as it stands.

Secondarily I'd love to see the eShop get a proper interface because finding stuff in it blows entirely. Unless you know the name, good luck finding a master list of all that exists A-Z in any easy way.

Sir_Deadly

#90

Sir_Deadly said:

that a great improvement, but it still 6 secs wait after the update. They are headed in the right direction though.

Dpullam

#92

Dpullam said:

It's great to have improvements that affect the system as a whole. This is certainly one of those.

hamispink

#95

hamispink said:

@mariobro4 I guess I should say that the hardware isn't able to compare with other devices that are out now. Compared to what the load times WERE, its great, but compared to almost any other modern device, and the promises of the PS4's speed(we'll see once its released) it's out-dated and it shouldn't be something that people have to accept.

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