The Wii U’s Web Browser Is Surprisingly Competent
Game consoles have never had what you would call a “good” Web browser. Gamers browse the Web on their PCs, smartphones or tablets. There’s really no need for a paired down browsing experience on a TV that’s slow and clunky. Nintendo obviously doesn’t think so and have released the browser specs for its Wii U system. Surprise: It’s not that bad.
If you check out Nintendo’s Wii U page, there’s now a full page devoted to the browser that will ship with the Wii U. Nintendo says that the Wii U’s browser will be powered by NetFront NX, the same browser that powers the Nintendo 3DS. The Wii U’s browser, however, is comparably more powerful due to its strong HTML5 support.
Speaking of which, HTML5test.com says that the Wii U has an HTML5 score of 323. In comparison, the Xbox 360’s Internet Explorer only has a score of 120. It’s even better at HMTL5 than the PC version of Internet Explorer 10 which sits at a score of 320.
Unfortunately, the NetFront NX browser does not support plug-ins which means that the Wii U won’t support Flash at all. More and more of the Web is making the move to HTML5, but a large number of Web-based games and video is still rendered in Flash. It’s a little strange considering that the the original Wii’s Opera browser supported Flash.
Nintendo also notes that the Wii U browser does not support the saving or uploading of images or videos. It’s a little disappointing, but it’s to be expected. Nintendo has always exerted strict control over its devices.
The Wii U is still slated to launch on November 18 in North America. We’ll find out then if its Web browser is up to snuff.[h/t: VentureBeat]