News Article

Nintendo TVii Update Adds New Features and Improves Interface

Posted by Jowi Meli

Get from the home screen to your content faster than ever before

Recent conversation around the Wii U interface has centered on the awesome 5.0.0 system update that launched earlier in June; for many, the update provides aesthetic and functional improvements that help the system's interface better stand alongside its next-gen counterparts. For users in the United States and Canada, those improvements now extend to Nintendo TVii thanks to a handy update the application received today.

The most immediately noticeable change upon loading Nintendo TVii is the new home screen — a clean, minimalist interface with colorful tiles representing users, recommendations, and favorites. This will make it a lot easier to jump right from the home screen to the content you want to watch, likely a nod to the convenient and intuitive Quick Start menu brought on board with the latest system update. In addition, the service loads much faster across the board, the search functionality has been vastly improved, and TV Tag coverage has been extended to each and every show on the top 70 most popular channels.

How frequently do you use the Nintendo TVii app? Have you tried out the update and played around with the new interface? Let us know what you think in the comments!

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User Comments (86)



9th_Sage said:

I'd use it if I had an antenna good enough to get the broadcast channels around here. I'm not paying for cable TV and it's 100 channels most of which I don't watch.



MagusDiablo said:

I wish that Brazilian TV Channels get supported by TVii soon, so I can use my console to the fullest!



King47 said:

I don't have tv so tvii never mattered to me. I'd like to see what its ask about, but I can't.



millarrp said:

I have played with it a little when I first got the Wii U, but until it can support my surround sound system and pvr I don't plan to actively use it.



sillygostly said:

Meanwhile in Australia…

(and what makes this all the more aggravating is that Microsoft and Sony's systems are being supported by local broadcasters)



JosieC84 said:

Damn it, Nintendo. Don't you know there are other people outside North America?????



SCAR said:

None of your TV channels are being broadcasted through the Wii U. The TVii app basically just acts as a TV guide you can interact with.



SCAR said:

@DaemonSword - It's an interactive TV guide. The GamePad lets you interact with your shows(polls, comments) while your cable/satelite/antenna is showing whatever.

I have a 1080i digital RCA antenna, so giving the TV code to my GamePad will change the channel on my TV and show interactive little things on the GamePad.

It's about the same thing as Xbox One's TV app, except Xbox One doesn't support antenna. Xbox One only supports TV boxes with HDMI, so it's useless for antenna users.



Kyloctopus said:

For the most part, I really don't care for Nintendo TVii. 1 reason being, I don't have cable with my Wii U, in the same room. It's a hassle bringing the Wii U to the living room, and there's usually a small reward towards it.
I prefer TV Tag for iPhone.



BenAV said:

I don't care that it'll never arrive here, but it'd be nice if they'd do an update to take away the stupid button for regions that don't have it.



McGruber said:

Don't feel bad if you don't have it! Its a horribly slow app that is only good for the TV guide. This latest update is not an improvement either. All they did was take away half the features to make it load faster?? You can no longer search for shows by whether they have TVTag, which was the only good feature to begin with. I also can't seem to switch from MLB to any other sport. Honestly just download the TV Tag App on your phone. It does everything NTV does, and much faster.



earthwormjimx3 said:

I tried it a lot in the most literal sense of the word, and I can't like or dislike it, since...well, it's STILL not available in Chile! >.<...



NickieBoy said:

Is it just me, or is Tvii super slow...? I thought it was our internet connection at first, but now that we have a better connection Tvii still doesn't load properly...



Sir_JBizzle said:

TVii is pretty much useless to me now. It was cool at first, but XBOX's OneGuide and built in IR blaster blows it away. That could be due to the fact that my setup was never supported. Never got that TiVo support they said it would have for one, so I could never control my DVR. Though TVii was great for live content with all the polls and such, but now even that is useless, unless I use Time Warner's guide data, because now I have Google Fiber and TVii doesn't list them as a provider in my area. Which circles back around to DVR support, being that there are no remote codes for the Google Fiber TV box.

Though at least I still have the volume and input switch functions for my TV, so it's still the first remote I grab if I need TV functions outside of changing channels.



SphericalCrusher said:

I used it a lot before when watching TV shows and on rare occasions, sports games. Since I got a new DVR though, Nintendo TVii does not support it. Maybe they'll patch it in eventually...



siavm said:

@JosieC84 its not worth wanting. And since you have to have the wii u on to use, it really loses what out on what the regular wii u remote controls does. Just work with out having to turn on the wii u. So you are missing out on little with this.



FJOJR said:

I've never tried to use it. My smartphone tends to do what it can do but better.



millarrp said:


Fair enough. I guess most of my complaints have to do with the gamepads remote functionality rather then TVii. Unfortunately it's enough to turn me off from using TVii regularly



endy_n_omni said:

I tried to use it during the Super Bowl because they were having some kind of contest tired to it. I don't even like sports, but my friends and I had it in on the background. I just find it a lot easier to use my TV remote than the Wii U's app. I do use the GamePad to do volume and change to HDMI for gaming, though.

Really, I don't want any of my consoles to help me watch TV. I can do that just as easily with my remote, Netflix and Hulu.



RedYoshi999 said:

Yeah, I wish Nintendo would just remove the icon, since it will never be available in Australia.



whodatninja said:

This thing isn't even IN Europe yet, after two years. Thankfully I don't watch TV and even if I did, I certainly wouldn't do it through a video game console.



Tman said:

Nintendo TVii is useless. It's slow, hard to navigate, and the menus are just plain ugly. I'm waiting for a more robust universal remote experience Nintendo. Add customizable buttons and support for AV receivers.



Jazzer94 said:

How about an update to remove the absolutely useless icon from my menu Nintendo seeing as it doesn't look like it will be coming to UK/EU/Everywhere that isn't the US.



AshFoxX said:

I used it just once when I was watching NBA playoffs one night to try it out. It's a pretty useless app, but I had fun for about 3 minutes making my vote on who would make the next point or whether the next shot would be worth 2 or 3 points...

You know, that old chestnut... Meh.



Meaty-cheeky said:

Nintendo should remove the Nintendo TVii app and focus there resources to other projects.

For everyone that is not in Japan or in America you are not missing anything Nin TVii is a useless app.



Boxmonkey said:

I've never bought a games console for the blu ray player of for watching tv on! Never have, never will do!



Genesaur said:

I have no use for it, really. Haven't had cable or anything in like a decade.

I love how everyone complaining about not having TVii seems completely unaware that those of us with access to it either outright dislike it or couldn't care less. You guys aren't missing anything special; you're just complaining because it's something that you know exists outside of your domain. It's the principle that bothers you, 'cause it sure isn't the service, itself.



electrolite77 said:

Tvii...that's a thing is it?

Yours Sincerely,

Seriously though, instead of this seemingly unpopular service Nintendo would be just as well served in the UK by creating apps for the Catch up TV services from the BBC and other channels that are free-to-air.



Raptor78 said:

Bring tvii to the uk already... BBC iplayer,ITV netplayer, 4OD and 5 on Demand. Then I'll be happy



cfgk24 said:

Meanwhile, in Spain.. . . . . 'Manuel, turn on the TV, I wanna watcha da Football.. . '



TreesenHauser said:

I've only used TVii extensively twice, and that was during both of the Super Bowls that have passed since Wii U's launch. Other than those two times I don't watch TV enough to justify its use. Nice feature to have though, I guess. Maybe once I get a cable box one of these days I'll use it more often.



BertoFlyingFox said:

I personally dont see the point in the TVii app. It seems like a glorified TV Guide but opposed to the TV Guide that's already on my TV.

Putting anyone on constantly tweaking/fixing the thing is a wasted resource imo. This is the one thing I feel didnt jive with Nintendo at all, but they released it half-assed anyway and now constantly fixing it. And yet still no folders or warawara plaza themes....



FiveDigitLP said:

Wow. I don't think I saw one single positive comment on here about the software.

For me, when it was first announced, the exciting thing about TVii was the ability to search for a movie or TV show and see whether or not it was available on the various streaming services I use.

Unfortunately, it never worked all that efficiently so I stopped using it. Now, with the update, I was hoping for an improvement on speed, but as far as I can tell the feature seems to have been removed entirely.



PinkSpider said:

The TVii app on my Wii U that doesn't work for me, I'm curious though but I don't think it's ever gonna be something they will bother with in the uk



dumedum said:

I dont use it but it seemed pretty cool when I tried it and it recognized the channels. The guide is certainly an improvement over the existing built in TV guide, since it has the images etc.



Fearsome said:

Okay, I guess I am one of the few that likes TVii. This best thing about TVii is using it to watch sports. You can comment on the play by play with other viewers and they take polls, Ex( who is better passer in the NFL). They also have a game where they ask questions to see if you can predict what going to happen next. For example, its 3rd and 4, will the offense run the ball or pass (NFL for all those outside the US), or will the offense score on this drive. You get to compete against other viewers and at the end the viewer with the highest score wins. For the Super Bowl the winner received a special Super Bowl Jersey from Nintendo. I use it to watch baseball and basketball from time to time. The play by play for the World Cup is pretty good too. I guess everyone pretty much knows it does the same for TV programming. It was kind of fun using it while watching the "Marvels Agents of Shield" this season. Some the comments people made where pretty amusing and some of the drawings on the "moments" were pretty amazing.
What I also like about TVii is you can use it while you're watching TV to review your local TV guide on the gamepad without interfering with what you're watching on the screen. If you want to watch another show instead of the one you're currently watching just touch the show on the guide and your TV will change the channel. As for the update, I really don't like it. I like the complicated UI better. I don't understand why Nintendo doesn't talk about it more. I have XBOX 360 and I must say I like TVii entertainment interface much better.



daveh30 said:

I've played around with it, and it works fine, but it doesn't really interest me. I think I'd use it if they added NHL support.... Until then it's useless.



Darknyht said:

@SCAR392 There is no such thing as a 1080i antenna, that was just marketing speak to get you to buy a new antenna. They all do the same thing and get the same signal. The best antenna I've used so far was built out of a wooden board, coat hangers, copper wire and screws. The signals come in just the same as long as your TV has the HD tuner in it.

TVii was an interesting idea crippled by a slow interface and for me the fact that I rarely watch live television. The sports mini game was interesting, but since the NHL is missing it is of limited use to me. The TV remote button on the gamepad, on the other hand, was great because the gamepad is as difficult as those giant, oversized button, senior citizen remotes to lose in the couch.



cusman said:

Nintendo TVii was dead on arrival for me due to how useless it was at fulfilling what it intended to do. Even if they have improved the app, it still isn't useful to me until they add Vudu streaming service app to the Wii U.



gatorboi352 said:

Here's why Nintendo TVii sucks now. Back when it was first introduced (and yes, it had many problems back then too) it actually allowed for Streaming Provider support. That means you could link your Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Video accounts to the app and browse all 3 of them inclusively for shows and movies to watch. Even better, you could click on the content you wanted to view right from the TVii app and it would quick launch whatever app the content was in for you. VERY convenient.

For reasons that can only be legal (because nothing else makes sense as to why) i.TV has stripped out any and all Streaming Provider support. They even removed the tile from the User Menu. It's pretty glaring, what with only 5 tiles in there now.

So, having cancelled my cable package, TVii serves me no purpose. Not too mention they've completely abandoned DVR/TiVo support as well. Oh, and the app is just overall unresponsive way too often when navigating.



nathanbjohnson said:

Soooooo, still no promised TiVo support? The remote function still can't control my audio receiver? They need to partner with Logitech's Harmony to get access to their database of devices and make this useful for a typical living room.



Sherman said:

Aaaaalways the same. We didn't even get the Photos With Mario app. Or maybe I didn't find it, I read that it was in a corner not so easy to find. Did we get it here at México, @HaThready? I'm so glad I found someone from my México to rant with XD



wayneyrob22 said:

will we ever get tvii here in the uk? the more i read about it the less i`m bothered, seems to be useless unless you got cable.



LittleIrves said:

Weirdly, I think TVii is most useful to those without cable. We use a digital antenna to get Over-the-Air broadcast for free, so we don't have a fancy TV Guide built-in to our channels. But I've used TVii as a simple digital guide to see what's on and it works fine. (At least, it did before the update. Haven't tried it recently. But hopefully that functionality hasn't been dropped.) It's... okay. But nothing like the BIG DEAL they tried to sell it as.



greeeco said:

I hate that you can't look at your favorites list to see which favorites are on anymore, no you need to scroll through the list and hope you click one that's on



Ruthven said:

No Europe, no England, no Australia… then I hold absolutely ZERO chance TVii ever coming to New Zealand.



FabioSMASH said:

Since I no longer have cable, my television is used only for gaming and online services.

Cancelling cable was one of my best decisions so far this year.



Obito_Sigma said:

It took this long for someone to notice the changes to TVii? Also, why is it that every single comment here either complains that TVii is useless or complains that TVii isn't in their region?



elstif said:

I thought it was a TV player (like the BBC iPlayer) not just a TV guide.
I guess we haven´t been missing much here in Europe.
Do you know if they have plans to bring it up into the region at some point?

In any case it´s just an add on app and I prefer Nintendo to focus on games.
Talking about apps, does anybody use the youtube app, I ran it once and it sucked. surprisingly it works great via the Internet browser.
I see myself using the gamepad to connect to the internet a lot which is a nice addition to a console I bought just for gaming; Best use of gamepad so far was that with off-tv and I personally used it a lot so I don´t have to fight for the TV



earthboundlink said:

Okay, I really need help with TVii. I cannot find where I can add streaming providers to my play options. In all the pictures there is an option for it on the TVii user menu, but I don't have that option on mine, just my TV provider. Is this some kind of glitch or am I just completely missing something?



IRGeek said:

I have tried to use Tvii and actually like how for sporting events you can compete against others on what will happen next. Unfortunately, the majority of the questions (e.g. Who will score next?) are expired where you can't answer before they even are displayed. There's also no way to chat with other fans online which would be nice. Lastly, I agree with others that the guide pretty much useless since most TV providers already have that built in to their set top boxes.

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