On June 26th, Nintendo filed a patent application for what is apparently a new controller shell for the Wii remote inspired by the Gamecube controller. A Nintendorks-exclusive artist’s rendition (read: colorized version of the drawing included in the patent) can be seen here:
The obvious use for this new device is a replacement for the Wavebird, which is becoming increasingly difficult to find.
However, currently the Wii shuts off all Wiimote functionality while in Gamecube mode, an issue that would need to be addressed, perhaps through a firmware update, before a controller of this type can be used for Gamecube games.
Hopefully the new device will be formally unveiled at next week’s E3 conference. Until then, labia.
Update: Wii Fanboy is reporting that this patent is based off an old Japanese patent from 2005 for what eventually became the Classic Controller, and is not evidence of any new product in development.
Thanks to ASPLM for the heads up.