Following up on an earlier rumor of a new DS coming to market, Nintendo announced the Nintendo DSi at a news conference in Japan. The new and revamped DS unit, which includes a 3 megapixel camera and a web browser, is set to go on sale in Japan on November 1st for 18,900 yen (about $180). No word on a US release yet, but there's a Nintendo press conference scheduled tomorrow where we're sure they'll have more details for those of us across the Pacfic.
The DSi will also be slightly smaller and have a larger screen than the current DS Lite, and will include additional photo editing software, built-in memory for saving picture and game data, and an SD card slot. The SD card slot will allow easy transfer of photos and data from the DSi to the Wii (and other SD card-enabled devices), while the built-in memory will help store a new wave of downloadable DS games that will be able to be purchased through the Wii Shopping channel, as well as a brand-new online shop accessible via the DSi. Wii Points will be renamed "Nintendo Points" when the DSi launches, and downloadable DS games (as well as the current and upcoming crop of Wii downloadables) will be available for purchase using these points.
However, the DSi is missing one big thing - the GBA cartridge slot. While GBA games aren't as commonly played anymore, games such as Guitar Hero: On Tour made use of the GBA slot to accomodate special add-ons to the DS hardware. The SD card slot looks to offer a replacement, however, this means that certain games that require expansion peripherals will not be usable on the DSi.
We'll follow up with more DSi news as it comes in. We can already tell that plenty of kids will be asking for one this holiday season!