Redmond (WA) - According to a recent interview posted on Spong.com, the Wii's online infrastructure will be closed to third-party developers likely until 2008.
In an interview with game publisher SNK, the head of the US division of the company, Ben Herman, said, "Nintendo is still not letting Wii third-party publishers include online capabilities in their games and it doesn't look like they will during 2007."
Nintendo has promised a unique and feature-packed online gaming service for the Wii, but it was expected to be available shortly after the launch. So far, no Wii titles have online multiplayer capabilities.
Long before the Wii launch, Nintendo filed a patent for the Wii online service that mentioned things like instant messaging, in-game communications, and a fully customizable user profile.
In the meantime, Nintendo has several online applications for the Wii, including a virtual store, an Internet browser, news and weather updates, and the ability to send messages to other Wii consoles.