Finding an easy way to have Delphi Controls (ObjectPascal) use WideString (unicode), without conversions.

I'm not a strong Object Pascal programmer, and find it rather frustrating
that Delphi (object pascal), apparently, doesn't allow an override of
"string" from the default of AnsiString to WideString. According to the
Delphi 3 help file(s), types such as "char" and "string" are suppose to be
generic types:

  The range and format of the generic types, on the other hand, depends on
  the underlying CPU and operating system.

Now using NT, I would argue that "char" and "string" should be
"WideString". At any rate, is there an an override on the default
definition of "char" and "string" from "Ansi" or "Wide", and if not, why
not ?

Does Delphi 4 have a solution to this ?

PS: Yes, I know there are some third party vendors creating unicode
    controls, but this seems to be such a fundamental ;) problem, I would
    have expected better.

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