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Wii U won't have DVD or Blu-ray playback, will include social media functionality


We already knew that the Wii U's games wouldn't be coming on DVD (like the Xbox 360) or Blu-ray (like the PlayStation 3), but we didn't know that Nintendo's next console wouldn't be able to play video from either format. Nintendo president Satoru Iwata confirmed as much in a recent investor Q&A, flat out stating that "Wii U does not have DVD or Blu-ray playback capabilities." He explained the reasoning behind this as -- unsurprisingly -- the cost, and the notion that "enough people already have devices that are capable of playing DVDs and Blu-ray."

Something that Nintendo will apparently be including in the Wii U, though: social media functionality. When asked about the new console's online experience, Iwata deftly avoids providing direct information, admitting only that "we are no longer in a period where we cannot have any connection at all with social networking sites." How this will be applied seems to still be up in the air, with Iwata later in the Q&A elaborating, "We're looking at ways that will convey to this audience which games are fun and, ideally, in a way that will enable people who are playing those games with others, to share that information socially."

He also said that the console's online infrastructure needs to be more flexible for developers, repeatedly citing third-party studios as the drive for Nintendo's new stance. Worryingly, he never speaks to the necessity of online persistence or the company's messy past with online functionality.

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