Thursday, April 12, 2007

Wii Internet Channel

The full version of the internet channel has been released, was it worth the wait?

The new channel still has most of the glitches I found in the original version with a nice skin. Still good, but not perfect.
Now the original channel I got as soon as I got the shop working again (change router to channel 1/11 if you are having the same problem). Initial impressions were very good. The ability to watch Youtube videos on your TV was instantly very class and then playing flash games with the remote only made impressions better. However, things started to slide from here on. The first thing you are likely to notice are some browsing issues. Every so often the browser will jump back to a page you were visiting earlier and then go back to where you were a second later. This seemed to occur more if you clicked on a link before the whole page is loaded. Less frequent was when the browser just jumped straight back to the start page. You would also start to notice that things like Real Player and Windows media player didn't work, and that you can't download the plug-ins. If you frequent sites such as Newgrounds a lot you would have also noticed some flash files didn't load properly. One of my favourite games, Neon, doesn't load the menu, inhibiting any play. The problem seems to lie in flash 8. However, it will play flash 8 movies, but not properly. It isn't playing seemingly random elements. For example, in one of my flash 8 movies, it loads the flash 8 components (introduced in flash 8 [they're V2 anyone who is in to technical stuff]) and they load, but a simple drawing didn't. It seems completely illogical. Now that seems like a lot of bad, but then when you might be getting a bit frustrated, you discover some sites are already making special allowances for you. If you go to Minclip, you will be redirected to a special Wii game page, Virgin Radio can now be listen through your Wii and some games on NG, like INDESTRUCTOTANK!, have special Wii controls listed in the instructions. Overall, the original was very strong and so I had high hopes for the upgrade, I envisioned that all the bugs would be gone, I wasn't so hopeful about a real player, but I knew that was low on my list of worries.

So was the upgraded version I could have dreamed of. Well, the first thing you will notice is the preview button is now greatly improved, bringing it in to line with News/Weather channels. Other positives include, options, better zooming, built in search and it never skipped back to previous pages. Unfortunately, not much else has been fixed. Some flash files still do not render properly, there is still no Real player and no tabbed (or even window) browsing. I was hopping for more from this update, but seeming as it is free it dosen't matter. Youtube will still be my number one destination as it is actually better than on PC.

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