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Nintendo DS hacks for free WiFi VoIP calls

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Since the Nintendo DS has a built-in microphone and a wireless Internet connection, what's to stop it from being used as a WiFi phone, or the DSphone, if you will?

Nintendo DSI've scoured the 'net and found some projects currently underway that claim to do just that, albeit with limitations.

VoiceChatClient is a homebrew application that lets you freely call anyone who also has VoiceChatClient installed on their DS. This hack even adds extra value by transmitting what you write on the touch screen to the other person! VCC requires hacked firmware or some type of passthrough device. (source)

DSpeak has been developed by Nintendo themselves, but aside from a demo at E3 in 2005, nothing more has been heard about this program. DSpeak will reportedly allow in-game and out-of-game chat. And when you speak, an on-screen Mario or Wario avatar lip syncs along! (source)

HelloDS was released some time ago as a proof-of-concept hack, along with a promise of a future version of this homebrew software. Unfortunately, the update has not been forthcoming. The initial version is still available and requires the firmware hack or passthrough. (source)

Metroid Prime: Hunters is currently the most easily accessible option for chatting with your DS buddies. All it requires is the Metroid Prime: Hunters game and a WiFi connection. You might want the NDS VoIP headset too. For this VoIP solution, you just meet the person you want to speak with in the same pre-game lobby and talk. It also works post-game, but not during. (source)

Conclusion: Though this handheld gaming device is certainly capable of competing with other mobile WiFi phones, the current state of Nintendo DS VoIP affairs isn't very exciting. None of the above solutions include support for SIP or for dialing out. However, the demand seems to be out there, so the DS might get to see a true VoIP app yet.

UPDATE 9/14/07: SvSIP, a VoIP client using the open SIP protocol, is released for the DS.

Have you made calls on the Nintendo DS? I'd love to get your feedback in the comments section. Don't forget to subscribe to the feed to receive updates on this subject.

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At 8:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What we need is a Skype client for the DS.

At 11:10 PM, Blogger Zack said...

Yeah, that would be nice, wouldn't it? I'd also like to see a client that's SIP compatible and capable of dialing out, kind of like VoipCheap, Internetcalls and the other Betamax products, but for the DS.

At 12:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

a 60MHz processor and slow WiFi doens't help VioP performance. Looked like a really neat use of an inexpensive technology akin to OLPC.

At 5:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think it is safe to assume that the NDS is as powerful or more powerful than other Wifi VOIP solutions such as the F1000.

At 3:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 7:56 AM, Blogger Charles Magnan said...

I'd love this for my DS so that I could talk to my friends after school.

At 3:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is a nice website, is in portuguese but tell about Skype for Nintendo DS

At 9:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It would be awesome if you could call people, on the ds.

Although, I wouldn't feel cool walking around talking on my ds, it would be very useful. :D

At 11:48 PM, Blogger TygerTyger said...

The most recent link shows an app that is capable of dialing out to phones. Personally, I'd love to use my DS as a phone in public just for the wtf factor. Sort of the same reason I set up my iPod to read my e-mail back to me out loud.

At 9:55 AM, Blogger Tripppy said...

saw the video, did it, worked out the wifi bugs.
signed up at
used gtalk2voip to call msn & Gtalk users. works a charm.

At 3:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

don't you have to pay for gizmo project after like 20 min of free minutes?

i'm still hunting for free unlimited service provider.

i can't even use because my country isn't listed 'free' :'(

At 3:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i use SVSIP on my ds everyday to make free phonecalls i have an itouchds slot 1 decive and i just put in the server information of the free sip site i sue ( and im ready to make outgoing calls. and sice i just bought the ds headset my phone calls are perfect phone quality email me and ill tell u how to get it working it took me a really long time to figure out

At 2:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

People have already done this. This is old news. If you have a cell phone, there is no point for this other than doing it just to do it.

At 8:40 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Yeah, that would be nice, wouldn't it? I'd also like to see a client that's SIP
compatible and capable of dialing out, kind of like VoipCheap, Internetcalls and the other Betamax products, but for the DS."

Now that it's several years later there are applications but not for the technically challenged...need a user friendly product.

At 12:21 PM, Blogger drayray said...

Guys they have already done this, just download the newest version of SvSIP and put it on the root of you r4, cyclo ds, supercard, etc. but you still need voipcheap on the computer you are using the internet off of, that sucks.

At 2:38 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

@PSP Games - Way to killjoy buddy. Debbie downer in the house.


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