marcan Speaks On The Progress Of Wii U Hacks

fail0verflow member marcan has posted a lengthy article on Team fail0verflows blog, on the progress of Wii U Hacks, the lack of motivation and the future of games console hacking, here is part of that article:

 photo Espresso_still_life_zps70d6f27a.jpg

The Wii U isn’t a particularly interesting device. It has the same old Wii CPU, times three. The GPU is a standard, and somewhat outdated Radeon core. The peripheral hardware is standard – SD, USB, SATA, WiFi, etc. The Wii hardware has been either kept as-is or replaced with compatibility shims. The only interesting bit is the controller, but there is already significant work underway to be able to use it with a PC (all you need is a wireless card capable of 5GHz 802.11n AP mode and special software). Even on the Wii U itself, the gamepad is managed by an independent Broadcom SoC that has its own firmware and communicates with the rest of the system via bog-standard USBand one of the video output heads on the Radeon.

The same goes, by the way, for the Xbox Durango and the Playstation Orbis. They’re both glorified PCs. With Valve’s Steam Box coming up, there will be little advantage to either of the first consoles other than potentially new input devices and exclusive games. And the Steam Box will almost certainly be hackable with trivial to no effort.

So where does that leave us? When the Wii U came out, our hacker instincts kicked in and we started looking into ways of breaking into the hardware. A few days before launch we had a firmware update scraper going. Over the next 30 days, we reached most of the milestones required to be able to say that we hacked the device; without going into details, there is basically no security left to break into, other than a mostly unimportant step of the boot process. What would remain is the tedious work of developing the open frameworks required to bootstrap a homebrew community, documenting everything, reverse engineering all of the new hardware, developing a persistent exploit (think tethered vs. untethered iPhone jailbreak, except without any extra hardware or cables), and packaging it all up.

Over the next few months, interest faded. I took a break to work on other projects. There wasn’t much of a reaction from the Wii homebrew community. Is it really worth going through all that effort when we already have open devices that are affordable and widely available? About 31 trustworthy people, most of them well-known people in the homebrew community, have access to what we developed, yet nobody stepped up to start working on a homebrew platform for the Wii U.

Now that is only a snippet of the article, marcan speaks in quite a lot of detail regarding Wii U Hacking and you really want to read that, so click the link below to be taken to the Team fail0verflow blog:
The future of console homebrew (and a shot of Espresso)

I want to say thanks to fail0verflow and marcan for the work the team has done on the Wii, PS3 and Wii U.

To discuss this subject of the forum, click this link.