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Nintendo officially launching TVii for Wii U in the US and Canada on December 20th (update)

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Nintendo Wii U hero (1024px)
Nintendo Wii U hero (1024px)

Nintendo has just announced that its TVii service for the new Wii U console will be available in the US as of December 20th. This marks Nintendo's largest effort to date to own a piece of the living room ecosystem beyond just games and will compete directly with the myriad of video-watching options already offered on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. As previously announced, TVii combines a TV programming guide, remote control functionality, and social interaction, and will feature major subscription video service options as well. It's also compatible with TiVo DVRs and can bring in live TV listings as well — making it a sort of "video aggregation" app much like those we've seen from Verizon, TV Guide, and Fanhattan.

Unsurprisingly, social is a major part of the TVii experience — users can the Wii U gamepad as a second screen for tweeting, posting to Facebook, or sharing and commenting within the Wii U's Miiverse. When TVii launches, it'll offer Amazon Instant Video and Hulu Plus immediately, while integration with Netflix and TiVo will unfortunately have to wait until 2013.

Update: Nintendo has revealed that support for TiVo DVRs will come to the TVii software in January. The company also says it hopes to expand that functionality to hardware from other manufacturers but isn't providing specifics as to when that may occur.