Nintendo TVii Finally Arrives For Wii U

By Khurram Aziz | Dec 20, 2012 10:55 AM EST

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Nintendo's delayed TVii service is coming to owners of its latest Wii U games consoles on Thursday, Dec. 20. The company made the announcement in a press release, saying the service will change how its customers watch TV.

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TVii, already launched in Japan, brings hundreds of channels on regular TV and the thousands of shows and movies available through apps from Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, and YouTube into one seamless, second-screen experience using the new Wii U GamePad controller.

"After Dec. 20, you'll never look at your TV the same way again," said Nintendo of America President and COO Reggie Fils-Aime. "Wii U owners have already experienced the transformative effect that the GamePad has on game play and social interaction. Nintendo TVii shows how the integrated second screen of the GamePad can also transform and enhance the TV viewing experience. Welcome to the new world of TVii."

The service, which was originally due to be launched with the Wii U on Nov. 18, promises to be much more than an online video-streaming service provided through the console. At its heart is the innovative GamePad controller which doubles up as a standalone touchscreen device featuring a front-facing camera. The controller allows the service to display information on any program streamed through the service, including cast details and critics reviews as well as live stats and scores during sports programming.

The TVii will support cable and satellite providers in both the U.S. and Canada, such as Comcast, and also include support for a slew of social features, including Miiverse, Facebook, and Twitter.

What's more, Nintendo promises to bring TiVo subscriptions to the TVii by March next year, adding the ability to record digital television to Wii U customers.

No additional hardware is required to use the TVii service for owners of the console which ships in the US in two models - an 8GB model which retails for $300 and a 32GB model which retails for $350.

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