Another Wii browser, still no Flash support… But wait! Nintendo is thinking ahead this time around, with the Wii U browser going one better and adopting full HTML5 support instead.
In Japan’s Nintendo Direct video last week, president Satoru Iwata demonstrated the capabilities of the new browser on the GamePad, and described it as the company’s fastest browser ever.
HTML5 is relatively new but is becoming a new standard in internet browsing, with websites such as YouTube including full HTML5 support. While there is a lot of Flash-based sites that will be difficult or impossible to navigate, this may prove to be a wise move as we look onto the console’s future.
Iwata also announced many other new features. Among these is tabbed browsing, a handy addition for web surfers like me who like to keep things organised (or disorganised, depending on your outlook). Another multi-tasking feature demonstrates a Youtube video playing on a TV screen, while the user can continue to browse on the GamePad even while the video continues to play.
When Wii U owners pause a game to use the GamePad’s internet browser, the software will auto-populate search terms based on the game that’s being played, helping users look for relevant information. Cheaters rejoice!
You’ll also be able to grab screenshots of the game you’re playing while its paused. The browser takes full advantage of the touchscreen controls and looks like a pleasant and simple browsing experience. If you don’t want to scroll through pages by touching you can instead the tilt mechanic, where tilting the GamePad towards and away from yourself to go up and down.
You can watch the browser in action in the video below. You can turn on English captions with the YouTube player options.