Surprise! Nintendo's got a $100 Wii Mini -- for Canada

Hot on the heels of the Wii U's debut, the diminutive device will arrive north of the border on December 7.

Wii Mini
Nunchuk of the North! The Wii Mini is headed to Canada, and only Canada. Nintendo. Screenshot by Jonathan Skillings/CNET

Nintendo has another new console to offer you in the coming weeks -- if you're in the right place.

Behold the Wii Mini, which is coming to store shelves on December 7. But the device, which is notably smaller than the well-established original Wii, will only be available in Canada. The device, matte black with a distinctive red border, will retail for $99.99.

Screenshot by Don Reisinger/CNET

With the reduction in size comes a reduction in capabilities. Nintendo says that the Wii Mini is "designed exclusively to play Wii games." The device can't connect to the Internet and does not play Nintendo GameCube games.

Word got out today after Best Buy Canada promoted a "Wii Mini" on its home page. Early on, it seemed that the ad was mistakenly placed on the Best Buy site, since the "Pre-Order Now" link didn't work. When searching the Best Buy Canada site, CNET was unable to find any Wii Mini listing. Similar searches on other retail sites, including the U.S. version of Best Buy's home page, proved similarly fruitless. But now we have it.

Nintendo launched a separate new console, the Wii U, earlier this month. In an interview with CNET yesterday, Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime said that his company sold 400,000 Wii U units during its first week on store shelves. However, during that same week, the Wii was able to muster 300,000 unit sales, indicating that it might still have some gas left in the tank.

In the past, Nintendo has offered up new versions of older hardware to keep customers buying. That the company is considering launching a new Wii is not necessarily out of character.

Nintendo hasn't yet determined whether it will ever launch the Wii Mini in other markets.

Update 7:56 a.m. PT to include new details.

(Via Engadget)

Read the full CNET Review

Nintendo Wii U Deluxe Set

The Bottom Line: Despite some clever dual-screen gaming mechanics, the Wii U's lack of compelling exclusive software and an overall unpolished user experience make it tough to recommend in its current state. / Read full review

About the author

Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.

 

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