Nintendo Launches Wii U Update, Makes it Faster... Maybe

Nintendo Launches Wii U Update, Makes it Faster... Maybe

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The Wii U is slow. It's slow to load games, it's slow to launch applications and utilities, and, as the company's sales reports have suggested, it's slow to find an audience. Today, Nintendo launched its new Wii U Spring Update which the company claims will cure the sluggishness of the user interface while also adding a few new convenience features.

Having just spent an hour updating my Wii U - yes, an hour, on an extremely fast broadband connection - I can safely say that it, well, it sorta helps out a little bit. That's about as strong of an argument as I'm willing to make in its favor, as launching things as basic as the settings menu still takes way longer than it really should. So while you'll no longer have time to cook a roast while you wait for the system to do its thing, you'll only have enough time to, say, make a sandwich.

But beyond the promised speed boost that may or may not have actually made a noticeable difference, the update brings a slew of small tweaks and touches that should make using the console a bit more enjoyable. If you own a Wii U, you can update your console by heading to the settings menu and navigating to the System Update tab. The full list of upgrades reads as follows:

New Features:

A standby function to download and install software while the system is powered off
Software purchased from the Nintendo eShop will automatically install in the background once the download is complete
Holding down the B Button while the Wii U logo is displayed during startup will load the Wii Menu *╣

Changes to System Settings:

An option to transfer and/or copy between two USB storage devices in "Data Management"
To facilitate this feature, you will now be able to connect two USB storage devices to a single Wii U console*▓
The ability to select multiple software titles when transferring, copying, or deleting data in "Data Management"
The option to adjust screen size is now available under "TV" *│
"Auto Power-Down" has been renamed "Power Settings"
Options for the standby function are located within this menu

Changes to Miiverse:

Added support for the Wii Remote, Wii U Pro Controller, and Classic Controller
Handwritten posts will now also display on the TV screen during creation
"Undo" and "Redo" buttons are now available when creating a handwritten post
Removed screen size setting. This option can now be adjusted from System Settings

Changes to Nintendo eShop:

Software downloaded from the Nintendo eShop will include released updates and will no longer need to be updated after installation
Removed screen size setting. This option can now be adjusted from System Settings

Changes to the Internet Browser:

Added support for the Wii Remote and Wii U Pro Controller
Added the option to change search engines when performing a keyword search
Added the option to return to the start page from the bookmark menu
Removed screen size setting. This option can now be adjusted from System Settings

Changes to Download Management:

Added the option to change the priority of downloads
Improvements to system stability and usability:

Further improvements to overall system stability and other minor adjustments have been made to enhance the user experience

*1 User selection may be necessary

*2 Only one USB storage device can be used during normal use

*3 A similar option has been removed from Nintendo eShop, Miiverse, and the Internet Browser

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They were absolutely rushing this puppy to market. Large updates, no marketing, no games. They just had to hit Christmas 2012 in order to beat Sony and Microsoft.

Ickabod:
They were absolutely rushing this puppy to market. Large updates, no marketing, no games. They just had to hit Christmas 2012 in order to beat Sony and Microsoft.

Sad thing is, if they had waited until now when the system was ready and had some decent titles announced, they STILL would have beaten Sony and Microsoft. As it is, they just shot themselves in the foot: reduced sales and people still regard the Wii-U as a joke.

I have a Wii U and its serving its purpose
1. watching Netflix on the pad
2. will play Nintendo first party games... eventually
3. gathers dust
4. makes me wonder why it wasn't called Virtual Boy 2 instead

DVS BSTrD:

Ickabod:
They were absolutely rushing this puppy to market. Large updates, no marketing, no games. They just had to hit Christmas 2012 in order to beat Sony and Microsoft.

Sad thing is, if they had waited until now when the system was ready and had some decent titles announced, they STILL would have beaten Sony and Microsoft. As it is, they just shot themselves in the foot: reduced sales and people still regard the Wii-U as a joke.

This may be true for the type of gamers who frequent the Escapist but I don't think it's a reflection of the market place as a whole. For many that Christmas rush is huge, and it's very likely that the amount of people who bought it because it's Christmas would dwarf the amount of people who would have bought it if it were a little more polished. Even sony and Microsoft know this, as they always make sure to have their console ready in time for the Christmas rush.

As for the Wii-U's operating system I haven't experienced it myself, but it's understandble that it would take a bit of time to get it up to speed. Ir was the same thing with Sony's online services for the PS3. Gamers often over look this but Microsoft has a huge advantage here in that they're primarily a software company and these sorts of things are their bread and butter.

It's the way things work these days, if you're going to buy something at launch then prepare to be a beta tester. And you earlier adopters of the Wii-U have my thanks, hopefully it will be polished enough by the time I'm ready to get one!

GZGoten:
I have a Wii U and its serving its purpose

2. will play Nintendo first party games... eventually

One of these days, buying this thing will have finally paid off. Honestly, I only bought it so I could eventually play the new Super Smash Bros. All the other first party games are just a nice bonus.

GZGoten:
I have a Wii U and its serving its purpose

4. makes me wonder why it wasn't called Virtual Boy 2 instead

Ugh no the Wii U is nowhere near the that kind of failure.

Also unrelated to that quote, Are we really repeating that joke like we did with the PS3? "PS3 has no games lol." It gets really old as does the collecting dust phrase it gets chimed on and on forever.

Towowo:

GZGoten:
I have a Wii U and its serving its purpose

4. makes me wonder why it wasn't called Virtual Boy 2 instead

Ugh no the Wii U is nowhere near the that kind of failure.

Also unrelated to that quote, Are we really repeating that joke like we did with the PS3? "PS3 has no games lol." It gets really old as does the collecting dust phrase it gets chimed on and on forever.

And it was old with 3DS and it's old with the Vita. Thing is, right now that's the WiiU's biggest problem.

DVS BSTrD:

Ickabod:
They were absolutely rushing this puppy to market. Large updates, no marketing, no games. They just had to hit Christmas 2012 in order to beat Sony and Microsoft.

Sad thing is, if they had waited until now when the system was ready and had some decent titles announced, they STILL would have beaten Sony and Microsoft. As it is, they just shot themselves in the foot: reduced sales and people still regard the Wii-U as a joke.

Seriously, I never understood the whole WE NEED THE CHRISTMAS SALES!!!!!! 'logic'. It just makes no sense at all to me. Wouldn't it be reasonable to get a more polished product in the new fiscal year (meaning a release in April/May)? Filthy fanboys (like me) would've jumped on the console knowing that it was decent with room for improvement, critical reception might have generated decent publicity. Yes, sales would've been slower at first but quickly snowball into nice fat numbers for upcoming Christmas when word gets around that the console is not shit and you have enough time for proper marketing (then again, Nintendo always failed hilariously at marketing their stuff :/ )

Now we had okay-ish first sales that grinded to complete stop because there are no games, no decent UI, and nothing that makes me want to buy it. Oh, I know that I will want to buy it eventually. I was one of the firsts to get a 3DS but it's only now that I stopped regretting it because up til recently I used it to replay old DS games >:C

Didn't realize it had even started downloading an update. So the hour of supposed wait didn't really bother me, during my hour of goomba stomping. That being said it is a sizable degree quicker, I was getting faster transitions than the numbers floating around the web. In booting up a game, leaving a game, and opening applications. Not tried yet but if this did anything to speed up the Lego City load times than I might actually play it.

Well, I wish Nintendo had waited and released it later. I don't have a WiiU and I don't plan on getting one until they make PokÚmon Snap 2. But given that this was the console that had FIVE GIGS for its first download and you had a chance of bricking the console if the download gets interrupted, I find it hard to consider it as a 'next-gen' console.

I know people rave about it like it is, but I don't get the logic. Yes, it has some 'innovative' thinking but it's power is probably slightly higher than the 360. If you get the basic model WiiU and you are online you have lost over HALF your HDD space in one patch, and with this patch which takes an hour with a fast internet speed... It looks more like it is a console that goes 'I made it first', but it's competitors have finished their race, and are in the middle of a cool-down lap while their team mate stretches and gets ready for the next race.

There are two things that bug me... Now that I think about it

1) How old was the Wii before the Wii U got released?

2) What is the point of being able to plug in two USB devices but only use one at a time?

RandV80:

This may be true for the type of gamers who frequent the Escapist but I don't think it's a reflection of the market place as a whole.

The sales issues Nintendo is currently facing would indicate otherwise.

VoidWanderer:
2) What is the point of being able to plug in two USB devices but only use one at a time?

Transferring to a new external drive. Say you picked an 8 Gig usb stick for your external drive. Then picked up a 250 Gig to replace it. Do you want to transfer all 8 Gig to the 8 Gig model to then plug in the 250 Gig to upload it to that? Or do you want to re-download all the stuff to the new drive?

Or the new option. Plug both in at the same time and just transfer.

medv4380:

VoidWanderer:
2) What is the point of being able to plug in two USB devices but only use one at a time?

Transferring to a new external drive. Say you picked an 8 Gig usb stick for your external drive. Then picked up a 250 Gig to replace it. Do you want to transfer all 8 Gig to the 8 Gig model to then plug in the 250 Gig to upload it to that? Or do you want to re-download all the stuff to the new drive?

Or the new option. Plug both in at the same time and just transfer.

You might want to re-read Number 2 in the OP... Unless I am misreading something, which is likely.

Zachary Amaranth:

RandV80:

This may be true for the type of gamers who frequent the Escapist but I don't think it's a reflection of the market place as a whole.

The sales issues Nintendo is currently facing would indicate otherwise.

What I meant was a big chunk of their current sales likely came from Christmas shopping. Had they waited a few more months to get the OS running a little smoother, like DVS BSTrD suggested, they would lose those Christmas shoppers and current sales could be truly abysmal. In the first 6 weeks up until the end of the year Nintendo sold 3.06 million units. Not great but decent numbers. From Jan 1 to Mar 31 however they sold about 390K units. That's where they're really hurting, though it's understandable that we're not buying since it's not Christmas and there really isn't any games to be excited about just yet, which one should remember is the norm for the first year of a console.

Well after that big update I can confirm at least for myself that I tested it with legocity undercover and the load times are unforgivably long and with the update it became only unbearably long.... so yeah that update didn't do much.

TJC:
[quote="Towowo" post="7.406712.16935529"]Also unrelated to that quote, Are we really repeating that joke like we did with the PS3? "PS3 has no games lol." It gets really old as does the collecting dust phrase it gets chimed on and on forever.

thing is its not a joke, my Wii U is literally at this very moment full of dust and it continues to gather it
its not a figure of speech, I haven't touched my Wii U since I bought Monster Hunter and even then, its just gathering dust on its shelve

I just can't figure out what the point of rushing the hardware out was exactly. Are there ANY first party titles worth a damn yet?

I hear about this so called pikman, but i was never a pikman man myself, so I don't know.

So its got a cludgy slow interface, has few titles, AND i can't even get a god damned metroid for it?

You know, if they had released THIS WEEK, sales wouldn't have been affected much (they havnet sold squat) and it would have been a nice counterpoint to the news on the soon-to-be-trainwrecks PS4\NEXTBOX.

Just sayin'

I remember when I said on this very site that $50 extra for the upgrade to 32 GB was a ripoff since you can get a 500 GB harddrive for $50 and then had people tell me that was because of the speed and quality of the flash memory... I think I can gloat now

RandV80:
In the first 6 weeks up until the end of the year Nintendo sold 3.06 million units. Not great but decent numbers.

I've seen other people saying this and I don't get it.3.06 million units in 6 weeks is not great?I'm sorry but averaging 500,000 sales a week is pretty damn good in my book.To put it into perspective it's only slightly less than the Wii managed and substantially more than either the PS3 or 360 sold in the same timeframe after their respective launches

Sure they're struggling saleswise since but to say that the first 6 weeks were "decent but not great" is just bizarre to me

I'm just waiting for more interesting games. Then I'll pick up the console. X looks cool. But I have no idea when that is going to be released.
For now, I'll stick with 3DS which is actually getting pretty good titles.

RandV80:

What I meant was a big chunk of their current sales likely came from Christmas shopping.

It's following a similar pattern to the 3DS, launched in February. The odds are, DVS is right. The timing probably did get them SOME sales, but I doubt waiting to release a finished product would have cost them much.

thiosk:
I just can't figure out what the point of rushing the hardware out was exactly. Are there ANY first party titles worth a damn yet?

I hear about this so called pikman, but i was never a pikman man myself, so I don't know.

So its got a cludgy slow interface, has few titles, AND i can't even get a god damned metroid for it?

You know, if they had released THIS WEEK, sales wouldn't have been affected much (they havnet sold squat) and it would have been a nice counterpoint to the news on the soon-to-be-trainwrecks PS4\NEXTBOX.

Just sayin'

Unless Sony or Microsoft can break the trend the first year of a new console never looks good. Expensive, minimal game library consisting of mostly shovel ware trying to cash in on the new console rush, and a more recent trend hardware and software problems in the console itself. Where Nintendo can do well is if they can have the glitches worked out and enough actual worthwhile games launched in time to start year 2 when Sony and MS launch and begin their first year struggles.

This is basically what Microsoft did to Sony last time around. Objectively year 1 of the 360 and year 1 of the PS3 weren't all that much different, but in year 1 of the PS3 it was actually competing against year 2 of the 360 and it took a real beating.

Well I have a wii-u. Have Monster Hunter 3, Lego City, Ninja Gaiden, Nintendo Land and Mario bros U. So with the update only taking 30 minutes to DL on DSL and about 5 minutes to install after reseting it, I can really tell the difference in loading times. It's not HUGE, but makes me happy to play Lego City faster. :P

 

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