The slightly bizarre, but probably popular, Wii-no-ma video service debuted on Friday the 1st in Japan, possibly to acclaim (no way to know, it’s Golden Week over there and the whole country goes silent). It’s not entirely clear what it will end up being eventually capable of, and video streaming devices are already thick on the ground here in the states, so they’re probably doing a little more market research and tweaking before launching it here.
What it looks like Nintendo is trying to do is create a whole Nintendo-centered ecosystem, kind of like what Microsoft has had mixed success doing with Live. But with far more market penetration in the entertainment sector and more standard equipment, the Wii-DSi team could be a very potent force. Japan is a way better test market for it, though, and of course it’s the seat of Nintendo’s power, so I can’t blame them for doing a stepped roll-out. Of course, they’ll have to make video quality and usability competitive before they try to infest our shores with it; from what I hear it’s pretty rough right now.