Nintendo

Ds Web-Browser – Pro’s And Con’s

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As I’m sure many of you are already aware, alternative Internet browser specialist Opera is bringing a version of its portable browser to the Nintendo Ds.

Nintendo have recently updated their DS web-browser site, which consists primarily of Japanese text and images. If you manage to translate the site and scroll to the FAQ section, you will then be confronted with all the features you can expect to see implemented into the Ds browser.

It currently looks as if there were plenty of pro’s and a couple of con’s on Opera’ part, whilst developing the browser for a machine such as the Ds. Some of the positive aspects stated on the website is the machine’s touch screen interface, combined with the touch sensitive stylus controls, which combined will make browsing the web a pleasant and hassle free experience for the user.

By using the stylus you can scroll between web pages until your hearts content, and for typing in text for any URL’s etc you can either write them out via the Ds’s touch screen, or you can take advantage of the inbuilt keyboard which pops up on screen. Though unfortunately it’s not all good news, as it soon becomes apparent that there were quite a few sacrifices made on Opera’s part whilst developing the web-browser for the Nintendo Ds.

The sacrifices that are mentioned mainly comprise of the browser being unable to support both Flash animations, or the downloading of PDF documents, which of course will be a blow for anyone intent of doing some serious web-surfing with the system. Another downside to developing the web-browser for the Ds, is that machine wont be able to support either video or sound, which wont provide the all round multimedia experience the web currently offers users. But without lingering on the negative aspects to much, it looks as if the browser is currently shaping up very nicely, and if anyone can make an enjoyable web experience for the user then it’s certainly the guys and girls at Opera.

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2 comments

  1. I think video and sound support are a bit much to expect from a machine with about 100MHz of processing power and 4MB of RAM (the RAM cartridge that plugs into the GBA slot has to be used as storage, not system memory, because of how DS programs have to access the GBA slot).

    However, I think they should have tried to get at least some Flash support in there, seeing as how the “Leapster” educational toy is far less powerful and has Flash support. Nintendo now finds itself in the unenviable position of selling a web browser that won’t let you view many of Nintendo’s own sites. (Case in point: the Mario site at http://mario.nintendo.com which won’t even load unless you have Flash 8.)

  2. Very good point.

    Nintendo will certainly have to think about optimizing its web-sites for use with the Ds web-browser, or as you say users just wont be able to access them.

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