Nintendo plans glasses-free 3D DS

3D is everywhere these days – even in the Nintendo DS. The company says it’s planning a 3D version of its handheld console within a year.

Nintendo says it won’t need any funny glasses – though it doesn’t say how the technology actually works. For a small, single-player console like the DS, the most likely method would be to use a filter directly on the display – in effect making the console itself wear the specs.

Provisionally called the 3DS (what else?), it will be compatible with games for the earlier DS and DSi models. It will go on sale in Japan first.

Nintendo says it will have more information at the Electronic Entertainment Expo in Los Angeles in June.

The announcement comes just as the company launches its XL larger-screen version in the US. Presumably, Nintendo feels that people won’t wait a year for the 3D version, so that sales of the XL won’t be hit.

Certainly, the DS is holding strong in the US market, and was the highest-selling console sold last month, according to NPD.

But Nintendo will be beaten to market by Sony, which says it plans to have 3D on the PlayStation 3 by June – although not on its portable PSP.