Yes, that title's surely link bait, but then I didn't say the Wii U was half again as powerful as Sony's PlayStation 3, apparently some analyst picked up by Industry Gamers did. So is this rumor worth anyone's time?
Probably not. All Sterne Agee analyst Arvind Bhatia reportedly said yesterday was: "Some of the developers we spoke to indicated to us that the console will have 50% more processing power compared to the PlayStation 3 or Xbox 360. This is yet to be confirmed by Nintendo."
Well of course it's yet to be confirmed by Nintendo. Nintendo's refused to talk system specs as a point of principle. The company's trying to change the dialogue altogether (see Analyst Calls Wii U 'Impactful', but 'Two Years Too Late'). All we know is that the Wii U's packing an IBM multicore processor and an AMD graphics chip based on ATI's R700 technology, that it'll include a 25GB optical media slot, and that it'll output video at 1080p. All of which tells us nothing, really, about its horsepower, save that it'll be more powerful than the Wii.
Would you care if it turned out to be only as powerful as the PS3 or Xbox 360? How about slightly inferior? Does anyone really care anymore how many texels these set-top boxes crunch? Does Battlefield 3 look better than Modern Warfare 3 (or vice versa)? Are you serious? Or just looking for another grade-school-caliber dustup?
Once everyone's at HDTV 1080p parity, who cares which system can do more pixel pushups. I'm satisfied with today's visual technology already, aren't you? Why not take all the money and collective emotional energy spent griping about this game's visual vibe versus that one's, and pour it into stuff that actually matters, like higher fidelity motion-tracking interfaces, better artificial intelligence, and less patently juvenile storytelling. Hire writers who can actually write, and I don't mean the latest New York Times bestselling fan fiction cranked out in volume and shelved after 'Z' in the sci-fi/fantasy book aisle. Track and lure brilliant designers who can make stuff no one's seen before and that'll appeal to an audience large enough to warrant its creation.
Anything else is just misdirected energy bleeding into the void. I don't play "50% more powerful" anyway, I play games. Don't you?