Reports from anonymous sources are starting to paint a rather surprising picture of the mysterious Nintendo 3DS. Both IGN and Eurogamer report that developers have said off-the-record that the handheld won’t use the Nvidia Tegra chip, as it was rumored to do. Eurogamer’s sources claim that the 3DS hardware is internally known as “CTR,” suggesting that the motherboard image submitted to the FCC in May, which noted the “CTR” codename, was indeed related to the 3DS.
According to IGN, “Several developers that have experienced 3DS in its current form have reported, off the record, that it has processing capabilities that far exceed the Nintendo Wii and bring the device with abilities that are close to HD consoles such as PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.”
We’ll find out for ourselves when Nintendo unveils the thing at E3, but this sounds rather uncharacteristic. Nintendo’s handhelds have always been designed to use not-quite-cutting-edge technology, to keep costs down and battery life long. We suppose a certain level of processing power is required to generate 3D imagery, especially on two screens, but if these reports are true, the 3DS would represent a totally new strategy for Nintendo.