Nintendo has announced that the Nintendo DS console will ship in North America on November 21 for $149.99 and in Japan on December 2 for 15,000 yen ($136.50). Nintendo of Europe has stated that the release of the DS in PAL territories should take place in Q1 2005.
Nintendo of America has stated that a demo of Metroid Prime: First Hunt and the wireless chat program PictoChat will ship with the unit when it hits stores just in time for the Christmas rush. Nintendo has also announced that they plan to ship 4 million DS units globally before the end of the business year.
The handheld unit allows for backwards compatibility with only Game Boy Advance games (not Game Boy or Game Boy Color) and only in a single player mode. Now, to get into the technical aspects of the DS unit itself:
- Size (when closed): 148.7 millimeters (5.85 inches) wide, 84.7 millimeters (3.33 inches) long, 28.9 millimeters (1.13 inches) tall
- Top Screen: A backlit, 3-inch, semitransparent reflective TFT color LCD with 256 x 192 pixel resolution and .24 mm dot pitch, capable of displaying 260,000 colors
- Bottom Screen: Same specs as top screen, but with a transparent analog touch screen
Wireless Communication: IEEE 802.11 and Nintendo's proprietary format; wireless range is 30 to 100 feet, depending on circumstances; multiple users can play multiplayer games using just one DS Game Card
- Controls: Touch screen, embedded microphone for voice recognition, A/B/X/Y face buttons, plus control pad, L/R shoulder buttons, Start and Select buttons
- Input/Output: Ports for both Nintendo DS Game Cards and Game Boy Advance Game Paks, terminals for stereo headphones and microphone
- Other features: Embedded PictoChat software that allows up to 16 users to chat at once; embedded real-time clock; date, time and alarm; touch-screen calibration
- CPUs: One ARM9 and one ARM7
- Sound: Stereo speakers providing virtual surround sound, depending on the software
- Battery: Lithium ion battery delivering six to 10 hours of play on a four-hour charge, depending on use; power-saving sleep mode; AC adapter
- Languages: English, Japanese, Spanish, French, German, Italian
- Color: Silver and black