|Type||Video Game Console|
|Release||November 19, 2006|
|Units Sold||101 Million (2014)|
|Online Service||Nintendo Wi-Fi (closed)|
The Wii is a home video game console released by Nintendo on November 19, 2006. As a seventh-generation console, the Wii competes with Microsoft's Xbox 360 and Sony's PlayStation 3 . Nintendo states that its console targets a broader demographic than that of the two others. As of the first quarter of 2012, the Wii leads the generation over PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 in worldwide sales; in December 2009, the console broke the sales record for a single month in the United States.
The Wii introduced the Wii remote controller, which can be used as a handheld pointing device and which detects movement in three dimensions. Another notable feature of the console is WiiConnet24, which enables it to receive messages and updates over the Internet while in standby mode. Like other seventh-generation consoles, it features a game download service, called "Virtual Console", which features emulated games from past systems.
It succeeds the Nintendo GameCube, with early models being fully backward-compatible with all GameCube games and most accessories. Nintendo first spoke of the console at the 2004 E3 Press conference and later unveiled it at the 2005 E3. Nintendo CEO Satoru Iwata revealed a prototype of the controller at the September 2005 Tokyo Game Show. At E3 2006, the console won the first of several awards. By December 8, 2006, it had completed its launch in the four key markets.
In late 2011 Nintendo released a reconfigured model, the "Wii Family Edition", which removed Nintendo GameCube compatibility; this model was not released in Japan. The Wii Mini, Nintendo's first major console redesign since the compact SNES, succeeded the standard Wii model on December 7, 2012 in Canada. The Wii Mini can only play Wii optical disks, as it omits GameCube and online game capabilities. The Wii's successor, the Wii U, was released on November 18, 2012. On October 20, 2013 Nintendo confirmed it had discontinued production of the Wii in Japan and Europe.