DSiWare is a service for the Nintendo DSi that features downloadable apps and video games for either free or for a price. It is similar to the Wii's Shop Channel and WiiWare, though made specifically for the DSi. Games made available on the service are smaller than those that are available on WiiWare and cost between 200 and 1000 DSi Points. DSiWare can be downloaded from the DSi shop, available on the main menu. It was not included on the original Nintendo DS or its successor the DS Lite. Nintendo DSi points can be gained by redeeming a Nintendo Point card or purchasing points directly from your DSi. You have a choice of buying 1000 points($10USD, $15AUD), 2000 points($20USD, $30AUD) or 3000 points($30USD, $45AUD). When the system was first released, Nintendo would give 1000 free Nintendo Points to anyone who connected online with the DSi between its launch and March of 2010. The service ends in March 2017.
DSiWare games and applications
The Express series are exclusive to DSiWare and are miniature versions of retail Nintendo DS video games or of classic Nintendo titles. Many of the games have multiple versions, such as Brain Age and Master of Illusion. So far, games include:
- Brain Age - 3 versions
- Clubhouse Games - 3 versions
- Dr. Mario - 1 version
- Master of Illusion - 6 versions
- Suujin Taisen - 1 version (Japan only)
Once the player has found the application or video game that he or she wishes to purchase or download for free, they will have to wait for it to be downloaded onto the internal drive of the DSi. Doing so will take a short time. While waiting, Mario, Luigi, Princess Peach and Toad in their Super Mario All-Stars Super Mario Bros. 2 sprites will all race to fill box with blue liquid. Once the box is completely filled, the application or game will be completely downloaded, and the amount of Nintendo Points that it cost to purchase will be deducted from your account (if it costs anything).
Each Monday of every week Nintendo updates their press site to show off all of the new DSiWare, WiiWare, and Virtual Console video games that have just been made available in a feature called Nintendo Download. Before DSiWare the feature was called Wiikly Update, though because of the addition of a new console they were required to change the name. Each week on Nintendo Download the DSiWare games are displayed first. A short description of the game is offered. Some argue that Nintendo should reveal the list of games coming out before Monday to give people a taste of what's to come, though Nintendo has yet to do so.