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Nintendo 3DS gets bigger with 3DS XL announcement

Nintendo has unveiled the 3DS XL and LL: a larger, updated version of the company's stereoscopic 3D handheld console, due to release later this summer in North America, Europe and Japan.
At E3 in L.A. earlier this month, Nintendo was quiet about a rumored hardware update for its 3DS handheld. But today, Nintendo officially unveiled the Nintendo 3DS XL, a larger version of the company's 3D stereoscopic handheld console. Nintendo said the 3DS XL -- known as 3DS LL in Japan -- sports a 4.88-inch upper screen, and a 4.18-inch bottom touch screen, compared to the current 3DS' respective 3.53- and 3.02- inch screens (the DSi XL's screens were 4.2 inches). The updated device is scheduled to hit North American retail, with a 4GB memory card, on August 19 for $199.99, strategically dated for the same day as New Super Mario Bros. 2's release. It will arrive at Japanese retail on July 28 for 18,900 yen ($235), and the same date in Europe (price to be announced). Despite the significantly larger viewing areas, Nintendo said the 3DS XL will have a longer battery life than the current 3DS. 3DS software on the 3DS XL will allow players 3.5-6.5 hours of battery life, while DS software will allow for 6-10 hours. That's compared to the current 3DS' 3-5 hours and 5-8 hours, respectively. Nintendo said since the February 26, 2011 Japanese launch of the 3DS, the company has sold-through an estimated 6.3 million units in Japan. As of the end of March this year, the company had sold over 17 million units globally.

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