Dreamcast Internet Starter Kit
The Dreamcast was a console built around its online capabilities during a time when home computers were not so prevalent. Sega hoped to sell the Dreamcast as a low cost alternative and it was this point they had in mind when they launched the “Internet Starter Kit” in the latter half of 2000.
The packaging is very interesting and although quite charming, the image of a child eating noodles might not be the first thing you think of when you imagine the internet. This was yet another attempt at Sega marketing the console as a lifestyle product, using the same inexplicit style which was so infamously adopted by Sega Europe, and their hairdresser commercial. It was aimed as a low cost alternative for housewives to access the net.
The set includes the following.
- Dreamcast Keyboard
- Dreamcast Mouse
- Dreamcast Mouse pad
- Dream Passport 3 Urban Style
- Dream Passport 3 Guide Book
- Startup Manual
- Internet for Housewives Guide
All items other than the Dreamcast mouse are special editions exclusive to the Internet Start Kit. The Dreamcast keyboard in this differs from the original one as it features words like “delete” and “backspace” in kanji as opposed to English.
The Dream Passport 3 Urban Style browser is exclusive to this set. Basically a custom version of the original Passport 3 which is aimed at beginners it features audio prompts and menus and message pages have been simplified.
The “Internet for Housewives” is a simple guidebook which explains a little about what the internet actually is and the benefits it can offer in our daily lives. The art style is typical of that seen on products aimed at women in Japan and Sega were obviously trying to increase the ratio of female gamers through ventures like this and the Hello Kitty Dreamcasts etc. Everything is written in easy to understand steps for beginners to follow. Seems amazing these days, but a little over ten years ago the internet still was quite an exotic concept to a lot of people.