Wii offers dozens of options for connecting your system to different controllers, to the Internet, and to software that is at the heart of the gaming experience. The term 'connectivity' covers a wide arena, and we can only cover a few sections. Here's a gloss of some of those...
The supposed inability of the Wii to reach the Internet was once a concern, considered a serious limitation of the system. Those fears are unfounded. It provides more than one way to do that, all of which enhance the value of your Wii.
One basic method is built right into the Wii, in the form of 'Channels'.
The Wii Shop channel is a direct line to all kinds of accessories, software, and more. The Wii Virtual Console, which provides a huge pool of legacy games that can be used with the Classic Controller or the Wiimote and Nunchuk, is another. But the most direct form of Internet connectivity the Wii provides is the Internet Channel.
The Internet Channel is software based on the Opera 9 browser you might have used on your PC or Mac. It's similar to the Opera browser used in the Nintendo DS and has the full capability of any other. Using it, you can navigate the web and use your Wii as a single-purpose computer, the way many web-connected TV consoles work.
'Connectivity' has another meaning in the world of Wii, one that refers to the ability to link a Nintendo DS with the Wii console. The Wii makes that possible through its built-in wireless support. No additional accessories are required. Gamers who enjoy the small, hand-held DS can play Pokémon Battle Revolution, Pearl, and dozens more using the DS touchscreen and microphone inputs.
In this scenario, the DS acts like another controller option for the Wii, which already supports the innovative Wiimote, the Nunchuk, the Classic, GameCube, and many third-party controllers like the Nyko Wireless.
The connectivity options of the Wii encompass far more than the DS-Wii linkage, though. Another example is the WiiConnect24 feature that lets the system connect to the Internet in standby mode. With it, gamers can send and receive data even when not playing a game. You can send data to friends, post messages on the Wii Message board, and more.
Still one more method of connectivity is provided by the Wii Wi-Fi support. Wi-Fi is a method that allows wireless communication between systems, usually via a wireless router connected to a modem. The PC (using a card installed) then doesn't need to be connected by a cable to the modem itself and can be used anywhere the signal will reach.
The idea has been adapted by the Wii system to provide that same flexibility and ease of use, except no wireless router is required. Wi-Fi Connection games include Mario Kart, Animal Crossing: Wild World, and many more.
Then, of course, there is the less glamorous, but all-important meaning of the word 'connectivity' that's used to describe the USB and other ports on the Wii console. They're used to connect Wii Remote, GameCube, and other controllers, among other accessories.
In short, the modes of connectivity for the Wii system are many and varied, which gives gamers hundreds of different ways to use their system to do what it's designed for: enjoy gaming!