A doctor employed to conduct tests with a patient using the new Nintendo 3DS has said that “Children should not be left alone to play it for hours.”
News Ltd, in the UK asked their Sun newspaper doctor, Carol Cooper, to test the device on a 22 year old patent Lee Price, after thousands of the handheld units which went on sale in Australia last week were returned by consumers, claiming that they were suffering from dizziness and nausea.
Cooper measured the patents resting blood pressure as 120/70, and pulse as 67, Lee played Street Fighter and Pro Evolution Soccer in four 30-minute slots.
He took the advised ten minute break between games – and here we chart his progress.
After 30 minutes, his blood pressure was127/72, pulse 66. Lee: I sat on a sofa and feel OK so far – a slight headache, but nothing extraordinary. Carol: Seems fine so far.
After 90 minutes playing the device Lee’s pulse was 135/80, pulse 82. Lee said “Playing as I walk idly down the street. My figures have gone up”.
Dr Cooper said “If this was your resting rate, I’d recommend you saw a GP about high blood pressure.
Carol Cooper concluded “The small screen packs an incredible amount of movement – no wonder it puts all the senses at sea. There’s a huge mismatch between what your eyes are seeing and what the other senses are telling you”.
Nintendo claim that a small percentage of people are susceptible to these symptoms when viewing any similar technology – including 3D films or 3D television – because of the way our eyes are required to focus on two different inputs in the absence of other sensory cues. 3D TV manufacturers are regularly placing warnings in instruction manuals that some people experience discomfort while viewing 3D images.
A big issue for consumers returning the hand held device is that retailers are claiming that it is not a “manufacturing fault” and as such have refused to refund consumers.
“The law only provides you with a remedy if the goods are not of satisfactory quality,” said Espe Fuentes, a lawyer for the UK consumer organisation Which? “Shops are not to obliged to offer anything.
The only way a customer is protected in this sort of situation is if the store has a no-quibble guarantee. Obviously, if Nintendo decides there is something wrong with the console, there would be a product recall.
Nintendo PR executives in Australia did not return our calls.
Last year Samsung Australia issued a warning on their web site about the potential health dangers when watching a 3D TV.