February 26, 2008 |
I have to admit my prejudice against WiiBrowser that started when I first read what they did; without a big, pretty HDTV, I find any and all web browsing from my kids' Nintendo Wii to be kludgy, ugly, and painful. The Wii uses Opera, which only adds to my pain, because the one thing I WOULD allow the kids to do with it online is visit sites like Webkinz World, but the Wii Opera browser doesn't support the latest Flash version, rendering just about anything the kids would want to do (including Webkinz) unusable. Add in the horrifying Wii keyboard interface, and I'm not sure why anyone would want to browse through the Wii.
Of course, I might change my mind with a nicer TV and WiiBrowser, which really isn't much more than a feature Nintendo should have included all along. While the Nintendo Internet Channel allows you to set bookmarks for your favorite sites, there's still the tedious task of typing them in with the keyboard interface. That's where WiiBrowser comes in.
WiiBrowser allows you to create a simple page with large button links just by entering your favorite URLs. Each page is assigned a simple number (not sequentially, as I checked a few in either direction), and is protected from vandalism with a password you assign. That's all. No login or username required. Once you create your WiiBrowser page, you can edit the links at any time on the web, saving you from painful typing of URLs.
Of course, having the ability to either use a standard Bluetooth keyboard or have a Nintendo log-in on their site that connected directly to your Wii (something Tivo can manage without batting an eye) would enable much more browsing and socializing without the need for a third-party feature app. In the meantime, though, if you have a need, it saves you from the frustrations of the Wii keyboard interface.
Update: corrected mistake in technology