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  1. #1
    Grandma broke her coccyx! Uncle Rico's Avatar
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    How Nintendo DS Works
    I don't know anything about a Nintendo DS. My daughter asked me a question. On the school bus on the way to a game, some kids were chatting with each other with Nintendo DS's.

    Now, I am having a hard time understanding how that works on a bus without a wireless connection.

    Anyone know?

  2. #2
    More Cheesier Than Ever Cheesehead's Avatar
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    Could be they work for short range wireless, like walkie talkies.
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  3. #3
    Affiliate Manager keystrokes's Avatar
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    Yes, kids can communicate with each other via Nintendo DS. It has a built in DS to DS "pictochat" system that does use a wireless technology. It has a pretty good range - like if you are in a high school gymnasium you can pictochat with people all over the gym.

    Basically kids can type or draw messages and send them to people who are in the same "room" on DS - room being one of 4 channels.

    A school bus is a perfect environment for pictochatting - however it is easy for the kids to abuse it - meaning use of foul language, mean messages, etc - as there really are no filters or controls.

    Hope that helps.

  4. #4
    Member BrettSaver's Avatar
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    I was going to chime in, but it looks like this has already been well answered. I got my g/f a DS not too long ago (she loves the brain challenge games) and so we looked into it a little. yea, it is sort of like a short range wireless. you can't connect to the internet without a connection, but you can connect DS to DS without any other tech required.

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador Jason Rubacky's Avatar
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    Both the DS and PSP have WiFi capability, and both use this to connect gamers directly and through the Internet. But each system takes this in a different direction, with a different focus. The PSP had games right from the outset that were designed for Internet play, and connecting and finding players works a lot like it does on a console. The DS, however, focused early on connecting players directly, and only after a year or so did games playable over the Internet start to trickle out. In addition, the DS uses "friend codes" for online play, so you can't just connect to a server and go; you have to swap codes with people before you can play. This is actually good for parents, since it's a little protection from your child running into questionable people online. Another boost for the DS is the ability to download temporary versions of games from a friend if you don't have a copy of a game. This means that only one person needs to actually buy the game to play multiplayer, which is a huge bonus.
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  6. #6
    Grandma broke her coccyx! Uncle Rico's Avatar
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    I wanted to confirm this pictochat feature, which allows anyone with a Nintendo DS to talk to another person with a NIntendo DS that is within 65 feet of them. My wife's friend was explaining that her daughter was in a restaurant awith her DS nd got a message from someone inside the building that said, "just wanted to say hello". The daughter turned to her mother and explained she did not know who this was. Later, the mom found the man in the restaurant with a Nintendo DS and said it was not appropriate to send a chat to her daughter. He apologized, but you can see the problem with this feature.

    This "pictochat" feature is what prompted me to ask the question here. I, like many others I can imagine, didn't realize this was possible with the Nintendo DS.

  7. #7
    Affiliate Manager keystrokes's Avatar
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    Yep - the pictochat feature is good when you are in a very controlled environment - however I have concerns about kids using it in public gathering places - such as restaurants, sporting events, etc. The best thing to do is explain the dangers to kids, establish guidelines for using the pictochat feature, and monitor your kids' electronics usage in general.

  8. #8
    ABW Ambassador ladidah's Avatar
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    I am glad you brought this up Seymour as I had no ideas about this feature. I knew my daughter plays with her cousin this way at home. But had no idea others could connect with such a large range 65 feet. I wonder if there is an option to disable to auto pictochat and to have it manually switch on to allow certain users.

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