Nintendo DSi XL

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 01 November, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 01 November, 2009, 12:00am

Nintendo has announced a big brother to its popular DSi portable gaming console. The new DSi XL is just that - an extra-large version, with a display 93 per cent larger than the current 8.25cm one.

Obviously, the casing is also bigger: the new DSi XL measures 161 x 91.4cm compared to the original's dimensions of 137 x 74.9cm. It's only marginally thicker than the DSi, but it weighs 100g more, at 314g.

To make it easier to interact with the larger display, Nintendo has also introduced a bigger stylus, so it now resembles an actual pen.

Apart from those changes, the new XL is pretty much the same as the original DSi. It will come with two integrated digital cameras, a DS card slot, SD memory card slot and headphone/microphone jack.

The bigger display doesn't seem to have impacted the battery life, which still offers between four and five hours of playtime at maximum brightness, and an impressive 13-17 hours of playtime when the display brightness is set to minimum.

If it seems odd to make a portable device bigger, hence less portable, consider the advantages. Obviously, a bigger display lets you see better, and will probably lead to richer graphics for new games. A bigger touch screen also means more control and precision. The bigger display also makes it possible for the DSi XL to utilise new applications such as Web browsing.

The DSi XL will hit stores shelves in Japan next month for 20,000 yen (HK$1,700).

Pros: bigger display, bigger touch screen

Cons: won't fit in your pocket, 100g heavier than original

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