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Nintendo's Wii Speak Peripheral Phasing Out At Retail
Nintendo's Wii Speak Peripheral Phasing Out At Retail
December 2, 2010 | By Leigh Alexander

December 2, 2010 | By Leigh Alexander
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Nintendo appears to be phasing out its Wii Speak peripheral. The hardware, designed to be used for voice chat on the console, will now be available only at "limited retail locations," with further shipments made only "if consumer demand increases."

The company hasn't specified what, if any, impact the apparent discontinuance of the Wii Speak microphone will have on the designated Wii Speak channel for which it's designed. Unlike standard online in-game chat, Wii Speak lets users correspond inside a designated chat room using their Mii avatars.

"We have nothing to announce regarding the future of this channel, and it currently is being enjoyed by many gamers," a spokesperson told consumer site GameSpot.

Wii Speak and its associated hardware originally became available at the end of 2008, marketed and launched alongside Animal Crossing: City Folk. Wii Speak addressed what many believed to be a gap in Nintendo's online strategy, as the other two consoles on the market developed increasingly robust multiplayer and social features.

The passage of just two years' time later demonstrated that the Wii may address a segment of the video gaming audience entirely its own, sharing some overlap with the audience for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 but having somewhat distinct habits especially as regards their online consumption, tendency to download content, use Netflix or play multiplayer matches.

The Wii also requires alphanumeric "friend codes" be entered in order for users to be able to connect or speak to one another online, versus the much more open ID-based system implemented by the other consoles.

According to the report, Nintendo points out that Performance Designed Products still manufactures its Headbanger Headset, which can be used for voice chat in Wii games like Activision's Call of Duty: Black Ops and Sega's Conduit 2.


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Comments


Eric Geer
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This comes after an announcement that it wasn't going anywhere.



Still it is a bunk piece of hardware that has a few kinks that need to be revised next time nintendo decides to do any sort of online chat hardware.

Vanessa Laniawe
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I was really excited for the Wii Speak, but then quickly realized how limited and inconvenient its use was. It was neat when I was playing Animal Crossing, but now, I consider it a piece of junk.

Groove Stomp
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I've never even seen this in a retail store.

Andre Murphy
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"Oh Nintendo Please!" I along with one of my best friends had a "Wii Speak" and the big problem was: If I (or if he ) weren't online we would have no one to chat with. Whats the since with making a microphone and your online community is nonexistent!!


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