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Last Updated: Friday, 15 December 2006, 15:08 GMT
Nintendo respond to Wii breakages
Wii controller and strap
There are reports that the strap breaks too easily

Games firm Nintendo has said it will replace all broken straps for its Wii console, following customer complaints.

The strap is connected to a motion sensitive remote which is used to control the on-screen action.

The announcement follows reports about the wrist straps breaking during use, leading to the controller slipping out of hands, smashing TVs and windows.

Nintendo said the straps do not present a problem if used correctly, but will still replace all broken ones for free.

In addition all new Wiis will come with an "enhanced" strap which should not be as prone to breakages.

The Japanese firm has also recalled 200,000 AC adapters for its DS and DS Lite consoles in Japan. Nintendo said the recall would not affect overseas adapters , and company executives expected only a small impact on earnings.

The problem with the straps, originally reported as a major recall, affects all Nintendo Wiis sold worldwide and almost all units currently on shelves in shops. Nintendo has targeted sales of four million Wii consoles by the end of 2006.

UK residents should contact the Nintendo Service Centre
Phone: 0870 6060247 (National Rate)
Address: Wii Wrist Strap, Nintendo Service Centre, CoDEStorm House, Walton Road, Farlington, PO6 1TR
Wii owners outside the UK should visit the Nintendo website for country specific information

The console has been a huge hit for the company with more than 325,000 machines sold in Europe in just two days, more than 600,000 sold in the US and more than 400,000 on launch day in Japan.

Nintendo UK said that consumers who need to a replacement wrist strap should contact their nearest Nintendo service centre.

Wii owners outside of the UK should visit the Nintendo website for country specific information.

The Wii strap is an important safety feature of the controller - which is waved around vigorously in a typical game. Nintendo offered a series of tips for safe play:

  • Always wear the wrist strap while playing.
  • Keep a firm grip on the Wii Remote at all times.
  • Make sure people and objects are out of the range of movement before play begins.
  • Players should keep at least 1m (3 feet) from their televisions.
  • Players should dry their hands if they become sweaty or wet for any reason.
  • Do not use excessively rapid, violent or wide swinging motions during game play.

Games for the Wii all feature regular safety messages that remind players to keep the wrist strap on.

Nintendo said that these on-screen prompts, as well as the consoles manuals, will be updated with further advice about correct use of the wrist strap.

Have you got a Nintendo Wii? How's the wrist strap? Will you be returning yours?

One of my Wiimotes came with a thick strap the other, boxed with Wii Play, came with a piece of dental floss! Don't think I'll be using that one... Nintendo already have a form you can fill out to request a replacement.
Darren Stride, Southampton, UK

I am the proud owner of a Wii, and always try to use the strap correctly. Occasionally the remote has slipped from my grasp(sweaty palms) however the strap itself has shown no signs of breakage. I believe the people experiencing these problems should play less aggressively and the damage simply would not happen. All the safety warnings are in place and if anything the warnings are too frequent. Players playing aggressively or without the safety guidelines have cost Nintendo extra money and resulted in bad publicity.
Graeme, Renfrew

I've just got through to Nintendo. They aren't starting the replacement programme until Monday in the UK. So if you (like me) need replacement straps, don't bother calling today (Friday 15th Dec).
Ian Gent, Cupar, Fife

I now have a broken Wii remote to go well with the broken television set as the remote hurled into the TV due to a sub standard wrist strap.
Annoyed, Leeds

I personally don't have a problem with the wrist strap on the Wiimote. I don't understand how people can let go of them. When playing games like WiiSports, I have a firm grip at all times. However, the wrist strap does loosen on my 8-year-old son and he constantly has to tighten it between each go.
Frank Blackmore, Neath, Wales

My grip works well on plates, glasses and various types of fruit as well
Chris Brooks, Sittingbourne, UK
My wrist straps are fine. Over the years I've managed to develop an ability to hold onto my controllers for an extended period of time without them flying out of my hand. My grip works well on plates, glasses and various types of fruit as well.
Chris Brooks, Sittingbourne, UK

When I got my Wii, The remote flew out of my hand and broke the TV screen because the strap broke, Nintendo should do more to improve its products.
Bob Sinclair, Dudley

Mine broke in about a week, my mom has tried to fix it, but we know it won't last. So yes, we will be looking to get it replaced.
Graham, Atlanta, GA, USA

The wrist strap is fine. Mine has withheld some pretty severe forces, and shows no sign of breaking. I don't know what these people do with them to snap them.
George Styles, Bexleyheath, UK

No problems at all with mine! I've not managed to let go of my controller whilst using it so far, so unless I do I cannot see any reason why the strap would break. Think this report is more about trying to put a negative slant on the success of the Wii.
Richard Tinker, Dronfield, Derbyshire

My Wii jumps and stalls while playing golf. I don't know what it is but I'm not happy.
Michael McLellan, Glasgow, Scotland

Mine has slipped twice as a result of vigorous tennis playing and has pretty much bounced back into my hand. I checked it for any frays or apparent damage and it appears to be fine to me, so no problems from this end...yet!
Jay Steels, Retford, Notts

I got one of the first Wii but after a few minutes playing the strap broke and the controller shot off and hit my partner in the face resulting in two broken teeth. She slipped at the same time falling into the TV set and smashing the screen. The TV was plugged into the surround sound system and consequently pulled it over and smashing into my CD and DVD collection. I advise anyone to be careful of the wii
Jenny Howard, Beijing China

My wrist strap is just fine. I don't understand how people have problems with it.
Roy Vink, Lemmer, Netherlands

The wrist strap doesn't inspire much confidence, but I haven't had any problem with it
Carlos Fernandes, Porto, Portugal
The wrist strap doesn't inspire much confidence, but I haven't had any problem with it. Although I play very enthusiastically the remote never leaves my hand. I think it's a question of good sense using it. After a few days playing with the Wii, I unhooked the strap because it was just getting in the way.
Carlos Fernandes, Porto, Portugal

I bought a Wii and whilst in use, the strap broke and the controller flew out of my hand and into the face of my wife. Although it came as a shock, she wasn't badly hurt.
Bobbles Clifton, Derby

I just can't understand how so many people have managed to wreck their TVs with the Wiimote. My 3-year-old niece, who has managed to destroy pretty much any item given to her, didn't manage to break anything or even let go of the Wiimote while she was playing WiiSports.
Catherine, Belfast, N. Ireland

Good on Nintendo for responding quickly and replacing straps for stronger ones for those who need it.
Caitlin Ashton, Bristol. uk

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