Nintendo's patent documents for the Wii U bring a few details to light about its big ass controller.
The most important hardware announcement from the Big Three game companies was Nintendo bringing out the big guns on a brand new console. Er, well, technically only half of the Wii U is new - the controller. The tablet-sized touchscreen controller is almost as big as the Wii itself, but it is meant to allow the player to get a personal display of whatever game he is playing and interact through a gyroscope and other motion controls. Patent documents uncovered by a diligent NeoGaf forum user has revealed that the new controller will also contain a magnetometer, an IR port, a speaker like the Wii Remote, a microphone and built-in flash memory.
Of interest is the representation of the the Wii U console as looking no different in size or shape than the Wii itself. The magnetometer might have some compelling applications, especially if the stylus contains a magnet. Players may not have to actually touch the touchscreen if that is the case.
The IR port also has possibilities as depicted in the image of a player using the Wii Remote to interact with the Wii U touchscreen on the floor. Of course, golf is the only game that comes to mind where this might work. Can anyone think of another game application for this technology? Field hockey? Beating hookers in GTA5?
The controller will also have rechargeable lithium ion batteries instead of the AAs needed now. I personally hate having to replace the AAs in my controllers - buying rechargeable batteries hasn't corrected the problem because I still have to pull off the rubber skin from the Wii Remote. Just being to place the thing in a charger, set it and forget it, will do wonders for making me an early Wii U adopter.
(I realize that buying aftermarket chargers from Nyko for my current Wii controllers is a possibility but A: I'm lazy and B: It's nice to have that function baked in.)
Source: Free Patents Online