Nintendo Releases Major Wii U System Update

A flurry of improvements await
April 26th, 2013 at 12:58 pm

Nintendo today released a new firmware update for their latest home video game console, Wii U.

The update adds a flurry of improvements to the Wii U, including the ability to automatically install downloaded games, download new software while the console is off and transfer save files and other data between connected USB external hard drives.

The firmware update also improves Wii U’s overall stability, preventing freeze-ups and speeding up the time it takes to load the Home Menu when playing a game or using another application.

Some unannounced improvements have also gone live which include upgraded icons and better user-interface features. We were able to identify the following improvements;

  • Games on eShop can now be sorted when viewing a list
  • eShop game screenshots now load simultaneously when viewing a game page
  • Screenshots can be cycled by tapping “next” or “previous” buttons
  • eShop videos load a lot faster
  • eShop video UI improvements:
    • “Paused” headline will glow if user pauses a video
    • “Switch to GamePad/TV” icon is new
    • Navigation options on the GamePad now – can view screenshots or game info
  • eShop now alerts users when pages are loading
  • Loading secondary apps like Internet, eShop, Miiverse, is faster
  • Download Management no longer lists the Update option, updates are automatic through SpotPass
  • Icon on Home Menu to switch between TV Screen and GamePad has been updated
  • The following applications load quicker post-update
    • Mii Maker
    • System Settings. App now has pop-up help and new icons on scroll bar
    • Daily Log. Now has new music and some UI improvements.
    • Parental Controls
    • Health and Safety Information
    • Wii U Chat
  • When loading home menu, Hard Drive Icon indicates when the console is waiting for the USB hard drive to boot up
  • Users can now copy and move data between two hard drives that are plugged in
  • Can load “Wii Mode” by holding down B Button while turning system on
  • General UI improvements, such as the “loading” icon which is now a softer blue
  • UI improvements in Internet Browser
  • Easily toggle search provider in Internet Browser from Yahoo or Google. This is done in the Search Box instead of the settings page
  • Improved boot up time on disc software
  • Huge improvement in boot up time on downloaded games

Thankfully, Nintendo have provided us with a list of changes that they consider noteworthy. The above were our observations, the below list is Nintendo’s official list;

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

    The update should take around 30 minutes to fully download and install. Find some hidden update gems? Let us know what they were below!

    Ty is the founder, Editor-in-Chief and nice guy of The first console Ty owned as a kid was the Sega Master System II which he used to enjoy games like Alex Kidd, Sonic the Hedgehog and Mickey Mouse. Since the early days, Ty's hobby became an obsession and over the years he has amassed a huge collection of video games from all manufacturers. You can read Ty's weekly opinion column here, and follow him on Twitter.

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