Nintendo is planning the launch of a Wii Mini console, according to recent internet rumours.
The rumour stems from an internal release schedule leaked from a major retailer, as reported by the Nintendo World Report website.
Apparently the Wii Mini will be a "Compact Nintendo Wii Console." Such a redesign would not be uncommon in the industry, with the Sony PS3 having gone through two major redesigns - each significantly smaller than the last - and the Microsoft Xbox 360 having gone through one to the same end.
Indeed, the Nintendo Wii has already undergone one subtle revision of its own. Last year the popular motion-controlled console was revamped and resold in a slightly smaller body.
According to the source, the shrunken console is "Coming Dec 7 2012." This move might be a little surprising to some, because it would place the console within the new Nintendo Wii U console's release window.
While the successor to the Nintendo Wii is already out in the US, it's not out until the end of this week - November 30 - here in Europe, and it won't launch until December 8 in its native Japan. That Nintendo would risk detracting from sales of its next big console hope by launching a new and presumably more affordable version of its previous console seems a little strange from a business point of view.
Of course, with Wii U prices starting from around £250, it could be that Nintendo is hedging its bets should the continuing tough economic climate really bite this Christmas period. A cheap alternative might be just the ticket.