Kotaku reports being contacted by Wii owners confronted by messages from Nintendo asking them to buy a Wii U which the note describes as an "entirely new system."
Wii users are seeing the message "It's time to discover Wii U. Wii U is the all new home console from Nintendo. It's not just an upgrade – it's an entirely new system that will change the way you and your family experience games and entertainment."
It's unusal for a console to be marketed in such a manner with direct appeals to owners of the previous version and the fact Nintendo have gone to such lengths to clearly spell out the fact that the Wii U is not an update for the Wii highlights that there is a clear perception issue with the system.
At the console's unveiling during Nintendo's 2011 E3 press conference many of those present and watching online were confused as to whether the system was merely an upgrade for the Wii due to poor presentation. While such concerns have long since been put to rest in the core gaming community the casual market – which formed the bulk of the Wii userbase – remains largely uninformed about the console.
This interesting marketing approach is perhaps the clearest sign yet of Nintendo's current sales troubles. The company posted a profit for the last financial year but that was only because of the weak Yen. Yesterday, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata admitted selling $60 games is "challenging" in the current market.