Nintendo DS is a handheld gaming system released by Nintendo. It was released on November 21, 2004 in North America, December 2, 2004 in Japan, February 24, 2005 in Australia, and March 11, 2005 in Europe. It features two 3" screens, (one of which being touch sensitive). It also introduces many new features to the Nintendo handheld lineup such as stereo sound, audio input (microphone) and 3D graphics. As with previous major Nintendo handhelds, the DS also provides backwards compatibility for Game Boy Advance games (though this does not support multiplayer).
The Nintendo DS is the first Nintendo handheld to feature built-in wireless connection, without any add-ons. The Nintendo DS is also the first Nintendo system to feature online play, by using the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection. It was succeeded by the Nintendo DSi.
Nintendo DS Lite
The Nintendo DS Lite is a newer, thinner and lighter remake of the Nintendo DS. It retains all functions of the original, but adds brighter backlight. The microphone is placed on the center hinge, rather than the bottom right like the original. It is smaller and has the ability to fit in smaller cases. The Nintendo DS Lite gives you more opportunity to work on your profile.
The Nintendo DSi was announced by Nintendo on October 2, 2008. It is thinner and lighter than the DS Lite, having removed the Game Boy Advance slot. Two cameras, one on the outside and one on the inside, were added, as well as music playback functions, larger screens, an SD card slot, and the DSiWare shop, an online shop much like the Wii Shop Channel, where original games can be bought.
Nintendo DSi XL
The Nintendo DSi XL was first announced on October 29, 2009. It is a larger version of the DSi. The only difference is that it comes with 2 games: Brain Age Express Math, and Brain Age Express Reading. It also comes with a larger and thicker version of the stylus.
DS Download Play
This is a multiplayer feature used in many games. In the Mario series, it appears only in Mario Kart DS. In the game, there are two ways to play with more than one player. There is Normal mode, when multiple game cards wirelessly play, and Simple mode, or Download Play. In this mode, gameplay is very restricted, allowing only the courses in the Mushroom and Shell cups. You cannot change the Engine Class. In addition, only the Nintendo DS, Tart Top, and Pipe Plaza stages may be used. Also, players who don't own a game cartridge can only use Shy Guy. Download Play is also used to describe single-card play in other games for the DS.