Factory worker pinches Nintendo 3DS, shows it off to the world

A sticky fingered factory worker has apparently managed to snag a finished version of Nintendo's 3DS handheld from a production line and wasted little time in showing it off via photos and video.

According to 3DSBuzz, photos of the ill-gotten gadget first appeared on a Chinese gaming forum earlier this week and were quickly taken down, though not before being saved and reposted online. In the days that followed, a virtual torrent of photos showing off nearly every aspect of the handheld's design have appeared, along with a video walkthrough. Check out the leaked images in the gallery below.

The photos deliver little new information, with the apparently final design nearly identical to that shown off by Nintendo in September last year, though 3DSBuzz notes that the home, start and select buttons now appear to be flush with the handheld's screen, rather than raised as in the September design. Shots also show the 3DS will pack a 1300 mAh battery and 96MB of RAM, with both specs higher than any previous Nintendo DS handheld.

Despite the bigger battery, Nintendo President Satoru Iwata has said that ''it is inevitable that Nintendo 3DS will be a device which requires more frequent recharging than Nintendo DS.''

The high-quality of the photos - and the number of them - have led some to suggest a deliberate leak by Nintendo aimed at drumming up hype ahead of a February launch in Japan. The 3DS is due to launch in Europe, Australia and the United States in March, and will cost 25,000 Yen (US$304) in Japan, with no pricing yet available for other markets.

The handheld will use a process called autostereoscopy technology to produce 3D effects without the need for special glasses, though in an odd twist, Nintendo have warned that children under the age of six should avoid using the 3DS for fear it could damage their eyesight. The 3DS will be compatible with all Nintendo DS games.

Images: TGBus.com

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38 Comments

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A little suspicious and interesting. The fact that it comes out on a Chinese site is strange to me as well (we all know the famous Vii I'm sure). Still looking forward to hearing things direct from Nintendo's mouth though.

Also, since when is the 3D warning an "odd twist?" It's nothing new as far as I know...

ahhell said,
I love how the video cuts out just when he turns it on....lame.

That's the part that raises a red flag. If it were genuinely stolen no doubt the guy would show off everything, but the fact that the video conveniently stops before we get to see it in action hints at this whole thing being a PR teaser stunt to drum up attention as someone mentioned earlier.

ahhell said,
I love how the video cuts out just when he turns it on....lame.
It will not work. It doesn't contain the OS.

yowan said,
Only 96MB of RAM. They should put more
96MB is plenty of memory for the 3DS. By comparison, the DS/DS Lite has 4MB RAM.

yowan said,
Only 96MB of RAM. They should put more
It's 128MB from what people can figure out, 32MB is reserved by the OS.

yowan said,
Only 96MB of RAM. They should put more

It's a handheld with a tiny screen, at that resolution 96MB is HUGE.

TRC said,
It's a handheld with a tiny screen, at that resolution 96MB is HUGE.

The iPhone 4 is a handheld with a tiny screen and it has 512MB. Result : Unreal Engine + ID Engine ported and showing sexy real-time 3D !

Add to that the fact that the 3DS must generate 2 images for each frame to achieve the 3D effect.

I'm sure it has the amount of RAM needed to do what it does. Just think for a second how ridiculous it is to suggest it can't do what it is specifically designed to do without any evidence.

The iPhone has more RAM, but is a phone, not a console.

This had to be deliberate by Nintendo. Do you know how many security measures they take to ensure people don't walk out with stuff? Especially something you can easily put in your pocket??

I was a supervisor at a CD manufacturing plant years ago..and to enter and leave the building..you had to go through 3 different metal detectors..one at the actual door...one in the manufacturing area...and one in the shipping dept....and even then..if security suspected you had something you shouldn't have had..they would scan you with the wand.

And if he is a "factory worker" as they claim he is..then he would be scrutinized more than anyone else at the plant.

And another thing...don't you think there is a computer somewhere that is counting the serial numbers from each game console from beginning to end what is being built? Wouldn't you think a computer would say..."Ummm..we have a serial number that didn't make it to the end of the line." Or even if it made it to an actual shipping box..it still would show up as missing by serial number.

Nah...don't believe this guy just put this in his pocket and walked out of the plant with it. Sorry. But if it is that easy to get something out of a Nintendo plant..I want to work for them.

texasghost said,
This had to be deliberate by Nintendo. Do you know how many security measures they take to ensure people don't walk out with stuff? Especially something you can easily put in your pocket??

I was a supervisor at a CD manufacturing plant years ago..and to enter and leave the building..you had to go through 3 different metal detectors..one at the actual door...one in the manufacturing area...and one in the shipping dept....and even then..if security suspected you had something you shouldn't have had..they would scan you with the wand.

And if he is a "factory worker" as they claim he is..then he would be scrutinized more than anyone else at the plant.

And another thing...don't you think there is a computer somewhere that is counting the serial numbers from each game console from beginning to end what is being built? Wouldn't you think a computer would say..."Ummm..we have a serial number that didn't make it to the end of the line." Or even if it made it to an actual shipping box..it still would show up as missing by serial number.

Nah...don't believe this guy just put this in his pocket and walked out of the plant with it. Sorry. But if it is that easy to get something out of a Nintendo plant..I want to work for them.

I doubt you worked in an Asian factory though. Bribery is rampant in all areas of business.

That's more RAM than the Wii has Though it is pushing out graphics to technically a higher resolution of screen (800x480 + the bottom touch screen, vs 640x480 for Wii)

~Johnny said,
That's more RAM than the Wii has Though it is pushing out graphics to technically a higher resolution of screen (800x480 + the bottom touch screen, vs 640x480 for Wii)
3DS will not push polygons like the Wii does. But it will take better use of graphics features with its programmable shaders.

~Johnny said,
That's more RAM than the Wii has Though it is pushing out graphics to technically a higher resolution of screen (800x480 + the bottom touch screen, vs 640x480 for Wii)

Don't forget the technology used in the 3D screens, requires the resolution to be split in half, one for the left eye and the other for the right, so theoretically the actual resolution will be 400x240.

It's hilarious how many updates there are to the DS line, but the Wii is such crap hardware and will be for so long. How is there not an HD one yet? haha

StevoFC said,
It's hilarious how many updates there are to the DS line, but the Wii is such crap hardware and will be for so long. How is there not an HD one yet? haha
The only one laughing is Nintendo, all the way to the bank.