Wii Internet Channel now free, with updated Flash [update]

Nintendo just dropped the price of the Wii Opera browser in Japan and PAL markets to nothing, its original "price" during the system's launch, when the browser was in beta. VOOKS photographed the Wii message that announced the price drop, which also revealed that the version of Flash used in the Wii browser has been updated from Flash 7 to Flash Lite 3.1-- which should make the Internet Channel much more useful. Users who paid 500 Wii Points for the browser will receive a refund of sorts in October -- a credit that can be used on any NES game.

In Japan, the same refund offer applies, and Nintendo is providing more opportunities for free Virtual Console games. Since early this year, Nintendo of Japan has offered 500-point bonuses to Wii owners for helping others get online. Starting October 21, Nintendo will expand this program with new rewards: those who achieve "Helper Meister 10" status (by helping 10 others connect) will gain access to every Nintendo-published Famicom game. "Helper Meister 20" will unlock all Virtual Console games on every platform! That should get people going door to door.

Update:
The Internet Channel is now free in North America, and the NES Virtual Console download credit will be extended to those who purchased the browser in the region.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.