A patent application filed on Jul 29, 2004 which was granted to Nintendo on Feb 2nd, 2006 reveals Nintendo's aborted plans for a multi-touch capable DS. The design of the DS (pictured on the right) doesn't resemble any previous DS designs (although it looks strikingly similar to one of our reader's redesigns) and lacks X and Y buttons. The main additional feature is the capability of the touch-screen to read multiple inputs from two
chopsticks fingers or more, similar to the idea we suggested recently.
We'd say that this design is most likely an early prototype that was canceled in favor of the original phat DS. The lack of X and Y buttons rules out the possibility that Nintendo could use this exact design in any future iterations of the console. As for the lack of a multi-touch screen on current DS models, the company could have found that the component was too costly when a single-touch capable screen would suffice. For this reason we think it's unlikely Nintendo will include a multi-touch screen with the next DS revision which Reggie hinted at in Engadget's interview, although we'd love to be proved wrong.
[Via DS Advanced. Thanks, Miyamoto]