[Update 2: A Nintendo spokesperson told GamesIndustry.biz, "There are currently plans to release a version of Wii in Japan featuring DVD playback," continuing, "There are currently no plans to bring this model to Europe or the US." Uh, okay. Why wasn't this built-in in the first place, or at least an optional upgrade?]
We know Nintendo loves to update their hardware. For evidence of this trend, we direct your attention to the top-loading NES, the redesigned SNES, the Game Boy Pocket, the Game Boy Color, the Game Boy Advance SP, the Game Boy micro, and the DS Lite. Can we agree? Good. They do it to encourage fence sitters to get on down off that fence (it's gotta hurt anyways), and they do it to get those hardcore fans to buy two of what is essentially the same product. And, according to the new Edge magazine, by way of an unsubstantiated NeoGAF post, Nintendo will release an "enhanced Wii" capable of DVD movie playback in Japan in 2007.
If this sounds familiar, it's because they sort of did just that in 2001 when they partnered with Panasonic to release the Japanese-only Gamecube and DVD-playin' Q. With the Xbox 360 and PS3 playing not only DVDs but high-def DVDs as well, perhaps Nintendo is considering such an option, but why not a dongle or paid software update for existing Wii owners, to absorb the DVD licensing costs while giving every Wii owner the option?
According to GamePro, Reggie Fils-Aime teased at a Gamestop retreat that there would be "another big Wii revelation around launch time." We doubt they're going to announce an enhanced model around launch time, which means there's still a chance the virtual reality helmet will finally come to fruition*.
Also rumored in the same post: CNN will provide the "news content in the News Channel" (is this thing gonna have RSS?) and Sega is moving devs off the PS3 to the Wii. We'll see ... anyone have their copy of Edge yet?
*Made you look! Seriously though ... it's a holographic projector.