Sales of the Nintendo Wii have fallen to an all-time low -- but there's still time to salvage some dignity for the groundbreaking console in our contest to find the Greatest Gadget of the 21st Century.
The Wii's sales slump has been spotted by discount website MyVoucherCodes. Sales of the Wii through the site are half what they were in the run-up to last Christmas, and only 16 per cent of people searching the site for discounts on games consoles are looking for money off a Wii. Wii titles make up fewer than a fifth of game searches, and extra kit such as the Wiimote are down to just 16 per cent of accessories.
It's hard to deny the Wii's impact on gaming. Nintendo's arm-flailing console opened up video games to a whole new audience, from wee nippers to grans and grandads and even -- lawks -- girls. The proof is that Nintendo's rivals have all joined the wavey-army party with Microsoft's Xbox 360 Kinect and Sony's PlayStation Move.
It may have been first to that party in 2006, but as a consequence ol' Wii is getting a bit long in the tooth. Its hardware has long ago been left behind by next-generation consoles. The Xbox 360 is five years old but Kinect has given sales a shot in the arm, and is set to give Microsoft a very good Christmas. MyVoucherCodes reckons the Xbox 360 makes up nearly half of searches, with the PS3 taking another third of queries.
The Wii is one of the gadget gladiators fighting it out in our Greatest Gadget of the 21st Century tournament. It's already narrowly defeated the Sony PlayStation 3, and is currently locked in console combat with the Xbox 360 in this week's round of voting. It's neck and neck between the two gaming goliaths: there's nary a sliver of daylight between either device, with the Xbox taking 51 per cent of the vote and the Wii baying at its heels with 49 per cent. Whether you worship the Wii or suffer from Wii ennui, your vote is crucial and could tip the scales either way.
Place your votes for a chance to win a gaggle of gadgety goodness, and either help the Wii towards a shot at the title or consign it to the skip of history. Let us know in the comments: is the Wii still a wiiner or should it be take out to the field and put out of its miisery?