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Opera on the Nintendo DS October 8, 2006

Posted by Brian L. Belen in Technology, Video Games.
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Nintendo DS users across Europe can now browse the internet in between games thanks to a new browser for the handheld from Opera Software.

Released last October 6, the Opera Browser has been much awaited by aficionados of the Nintendo DS. The handheld, with its built-in Wi-Fi capability, allows for multiplayer gaming over the internet but does not by itself enable users to surf the web. With this first in a new line of browsers for Nintendo products (the company is also planning a browser for the next-generation Wii console), Opera stands to make its presence felt in the very lucrative handheld gaming market.

The browser is packaged in what has been described as a cartridge – with separate versions for the original Nintendo DS and the slimmer DS Lite – and will retail at around €39.99. On balance, this means that a Nintendo DS with the Opera Browser will cost nearly as much as a Sony PSP, which also has Wi-Fi capability and comes with an internet browser already built-in. However, the Nintendo DS does have the added advantage of a stylus and touch screen, which should make navigating websites much easier.

There is no word yet on when a US release can be expected, but it should not be too far off. Given Opera’s success creating browsers for mobile phones, there is every reason to expect that the Nintendo DS version will be a hit, what with how easy the Nintendo Wi-Fi connection makes getting online. In any event, the browser does come one step closer to making the DS the PDA it was never intended to but just might be.

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