How to Surf the Internet on Your Nintendo Wii

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01
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Prepare for Installation

What you need:

  • A Wii console with an Internet connection. If you haven’t got connected yet, read my step-by-step tutorial, How to Get Your Wii Online
  • While optional, a USB keyboard is also extremely useful when web surfing on the Wii. You can use a standard PC wired or wireless keyboard or try a Wii-specific keyboard like Logitech’s. If you don’t have a keyboard you’ll have to use the remote to click letters on a virtual keyboard.
02
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Install the Wii Internet Channel Web Browser

From the main screen, click on the “Wii Shopping” channel, then click “START.”

Click on “Start Shopping,” then click on the “Wii Channels” button. Scroll down to “Internet Channel” and click on it. Download the channel.

Once it’s downloaded click OK and then go back to the Wii Menu, where you will see you have a new channel called the “Internet Channel.”

03
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Start the Internet Channel

Click on “The Internet Channel” and then click “start.” This will bring up the Wii browser, which is a Wii version of the Opera Browser.

On the start page there are three big buttons, one to search for something on the Internet, one to input a web address (for example, nintendo.about.com) and a “Favorites” button which lists websites you have bookmarked (like, hopefully, nintendo.about.com).

To the right is a picture of the Wii remote, clicking on that will tell you what each button does.

There is also an operations guide that gives a detailed explanation of the browser, and a settings option to change the way the browser operates.

04
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Surf the Web

Once you go to a web site you will see a toolbar at the bottom of the screen (unless you have changed the default toolbar setting). Mousing over a toolbar button will pop up text telling you that button’s purpose. The first three buttons are standard on any browser. “Back” takes you to pages you were on earlier, “Forward” goes the other direction, and Refresh reloads the page.

On the start page there are three big buttons, one to search for something on the Internet, one to input a web address (for example, nintendo.about.com) and a “Favorites” button which lists websites you have bookmarked (like, hopefully, nintendo.about.com).

To the right is a picture of the Wii remote, clicking on that will tell you what each button does.

There is also an operations guide that gives a detailed explanation of the browser, and a toolbar setting. Mousing over a toolbar button will pop up text telling you that button’s purpose. The first three buttons are standard on any browser. “Back” takes you to pages you were on earlier, “Forward” goes the other direction, and Refresh reloads the page.

Next are the three buttons from the start page: “Search,” “Favorites” – which allows you to go to a favorite or bookmark the current page as a favorite - and “Enter Web Address.” There is also a button that takes you back to the start page. Finally there is a smaller button, a lowercase “i” in a circle, that when clicked will tell you the title and web address of the page you’re on and let you edit that address or send it to anyone on your Wii friends list.

Navigate pages with the remote. Pressing the A button is the same as clicking the mouse button on a computer. Holding the B button and moving the remote scrolls the page. The plus and minus buttons are used for zooming in and out and the “2” button lets you toggle between a normal display and one in which the page is displayed as one long single column, which is useful for dealing with elaborately formatted websites. If you set toolbar to “Button Toggle” in the settings then you can toggle the toolbar on and off with the “1” button.

05
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Optional: Tweak Your Browser Settings

Zoom

There are two zoom settings, manual and automatic. Zooming is done with the plus and minus buttons on the remote. If you have “smooth” selected then when you zoom in the text will come towards you slowly and evenly until you let go. With automatic zoom, pressing the plus button zooms in to show you the text you clicked on filling the whole screen, while minus zooms you out to a standard view.

Toolbar

The toolbar setting controls the behavior of the navigation toolbar that appears on the bottom of the screen. “Always display” means you always see the toolbar, “Auto-Hide” means the toolbar disappears when you move your cursor off it and appears when you move the cursor to the bottom of the screen. “Button Toggle” lets you turn the toolbar off and on by pressing the “1” button.

Search engine

Choose whether your default search engine is Google or Yahoo.

Delete cookies

When you visit websites they often create small files containing information such as when you last visited the site or whether you want to remain permanently logged in. If you want to remove all these files, click this.

Adjust Display

This allows you to tweak the width of the browser, useful if it doesn’t reach the edges of the screen. I don’t know what "enable vertical scroll margin” does; if you know, please explain it to me.

Proxy Settings

Proxy Settings are an advanced concept. The vast majority of Wii users will never need this. If you do need to change your proxy settings, you probably know more about the subject than I do.