WiiConnect24 is a feature of the Wii console first announced at E3 2006 by Nintendo. It enables some of the system's features to work while the console is on stand-by; for example, a friend might be able to visit another player's Wii town and leave that player messages in Animal Crossing without him or her being present. WiiConnect24 is sometimes confused with Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection, which is used to provide online gameplay over Nintendo's servers. Online gameplay titles for the Wii are able to make use of both the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection service and WiiConnect24.
WiiConnect24 is used to receive content such as Wii Message Board messages sent from other Wii consoles, Miis, e-mails, updated channel and game content, and notification of software updates. If the Standby Connect mode of WiiConnect24 is enabled, this content can also be received when the Wii is left in standby mode. While running in standby mode with Standby Connection enabled, the Wii uses about 9.6 watts, compared to 1.3 watts without WiiConnect24.
WiiConnect24 can be turned on or off via the Setup Interface. If it is on, the user is allowed to enable or disable Standby Connect mode. While the system is in standby, the Power LED indicates the current status of the standby connection, red indicating Standby Connect is off, orange indicating Standby Connect mode is on. If the power button on the console is pressed and held down for three to four seconds, the Wii will go into standby mode with Standby Connect off. If the Wii is cut off from power and power is later restored, it will go into standby mode with Standby Connect mode off and WiiConnect24 will not operate until the console is turned on.
The Wii Optical Drive will glow a neon-blue color when data has been received through WiiConnect24 in Standby Connect mode and, with firmware 3.0 and above, it will briefly flash when the console is turned on. The brightness level of this blue color can be changed via the Setup Interface with the options of Bright, Dim or Off. The light dims and brightens smoothly when a message has been received from Nintendo, and flickers when a message has been received from a friend.
Let's say your Wii is connected to the Internet in a mode that allows activation on a 24-hour basis. This would allow Nintendo to send monthly promotional demos for the DS, during the night, to the Wii consoles in each household. Users would wake up each morning, find the LED lamp on their Wii flashing, and know that Nintendo has sent them something. They would then be able to download the promotional demo from their Wii systems to their Nintendo DS's.
According to Nintendo's European micro-site for the Wii, WiiConnect24 can be used to send SMS messages "to family members that are out and about", and exchange pictures and messages with other Wii users.
|Mii Channel||Miis created by friends can be shared||November 19, 2006 (with console)|
|Wii Shop Channel||New games are featured each week on the channel's icon||November 19, 2006 (with console)|
|Forecast Channel||Current local and worldwide weather conditions||December 20, 2006|
|News Channel||The latest news articles and headlines||January 24, 2007|
|Everybody Votes Channel||Polls and poll results||February 14, 2007|
|Check Mii Out Channel / Mii Contest Channel||Miis can be shared as well as judged on a global scale||November 11, 2007|
|Mario Kart Wii Channel||Can race ghost data, view world-wide racing times, view friend list, participate in competitions||April 10 2008 (Japan), April 11 2008 (Europe), April 24 2008 (Australia), April 27 2008 (America)|
|Nintendo Channel||Allows Wii users to watch trailers for games and download demos and game patches for the Nintendo DS.||November 27 2007 (Japan), May 7 2008 (America), May 30 2008 (Europe & Australia)|
The Forecast and News channels require that both WiiConnect24 and Standby Connection are enabled to work; if WiiConnect24 is enabled and Standby Connection is disabled then channels will simply give an error upon trying to launch them and return to the Wii Menu. The reason for this requirement is unclear, as the channels will still operate even if the Wii is consistently shut-down fully by holding the power button for 4 seconds.
The initial firmware update caused some parts of the system to be inaccessible to a small portion of people who purchased the Wii at launch. Those Wii systems received constant error codes such as 110213 and 32002; for those users it was necessary to contact Nintendo's customer service to replace or repair the system. This issue has not been reported on any Wii systems shipped since launch. Some have attributed the slow connection and errors to server overloads.
In some countries, trying to connect to WiiConnect24 brings up a screen stating that the service "is currently not being offered". This can be circumvented by selecting a different country as a locale. It is currently unknown what the actual availability map of the service is.
The PAL versions of the Wii connected with RGB SCART cables continue to send a SCART switching signal when the Wii is in WiiConnect24 standby mode. This occurs with both official Nintendo RGB SCART cables, and any third party RGB SCART cables that carry the SCART switching signal. This problem can be alleviated by disabling standby mode, but leaving WiiConnect24 running.
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