Nintendo has revealed additional details about the upcoming Wii U console, which it hopes will put it back on a profit-making path for the year ahead.

Nintendo has revealed additional details about the upcoming Wii U console, which it hopes will put it back on a profit-making path for the year ahead.

 
The company's president, Satoru Iwata, expanded upon yesterday's announcement that the Wii U would launch this year by adding that the US and European launches will be in “the holiday season,” confirming our suspicions that we won't see it until late October or November at the earliest. Since he omitted mention of Japan we can probably expect a release there a month or two before this.
 
Iwata said that a final form, with full specifications, of the Wii U will be shown at E3 or soon afterwards in Tokyo, so we should get the full scoop some time in the Summer.
 
The Wii U controller, which acts like a cross between a motion sensor and a tablet computer, will also feature Near Field Communication (NFC) technology. This is big news, as NFC is vastly superior to Bluetooth or Infrafred short-range wireless systems, allowing devices to communicate by bringing them within a short distance of each other. 
 
 
This will add significant new gaming functionality to the Wii U compared to the Wii and rival consoles, and it shows that Nintendo is learning from what is going on in the mobile industry, where NFC is expected to boom.
 
However, Iwata suggested that NFC support in games might involve “a small charge,” which means this might not come as standard with all games. It could be that extra features will be opened up in this way, which will provide a potential additional source of revenue. It might also anger some customers, however, who might expect to have all of the features up front with the purchase of the console and games.
 
Iwata said that Nintendo has learned from the bitter experiences of the 3DS launch, which had few launch titles available, suggesting that it will ensure there is a wide selection of games available at the end of this year.