STRICTLY EMBARGOED UNTIL 00:01 FRIDAY 4th NOVEMBER 2005
03 November 2005 - There is a revolution afoot in the worlds of Wi-Fi and gaming. Nintendo UK is bringing Wi-Fi technology into play from the 25th November 2005 with a new groundbreaking deal with wireless providers BT Openzone and The Cloud. The launch of the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection service means the UK will take an unprecedented step forward into a new era of gaming, allowing anyone to play against friends and family across the globe simply, safely and best of all - for free*.
To ensure that anyone really can play against others from all over the world with their Nintendo DS, the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection can be accessed in any one of three ways:
Gamers will be able to visit any one of over 7,500 Wi-Fi hotspots at locations across the UK. These include McDonalds restaurants, Coffee Republic coffee houses, Hilton and Ramada Jarvis hotels, Road Chef and Welcome Break service stations, First Great Western railway stations, over 25 student unions and city centre BT Payphones and airports, football stadiums and even the British Library and Canary Wharf. By logging onto www.thecloud.net or www.btopenzone.com and entering your town or postcode; you can find the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection hotspots closest to you.
Nintendo UK will also be installing BT Openzone Wi-Fi hotspots into major video games retailers and other key outlets across the UK, meaning it really is possible to game anywhere!
Gamers with a broadband internet connection at home will be able to enjoy the free*, simple and safe Wi-Fi gaming service, you simply need a Wi-Fi access point or hotspot, like a Wi-Fi wireless router, and an active broadband internet connection. If you do not have a wireless access point, you can purchase a Nintendo Wi-Fi USB Connector (available 25th November for around £30) which plugs into a PC and automatically sets up a connection for you.
Nintendo's Wi-Fi gaming service is free* - there are no fees or subscriptions to pay. It's incredibly easy to use - you simply turn it on and select Wi-Fi, there are no complicated menu screens and minimum configurations required and most importantly Nintendo's Wi-Fi Connection service is a safe environment for players. Players have the option to select to play with just friends, or people of a similar skill level around the world without fear of harassment. Players do not have direct communication with each other when playing anonymously and therefore personal details or inappropriate comments cannot be exchanged.
David Yarnton, General Manager, Nintendo UK said:
"Nintendo are bringing a significant, groundbreaking deal to the UK. Launching our Wi-Fi service in partnership with two of the UK's leading providers of hotspots is a massive statement of our commitment. Nintendo has revolutionised Wi-Fi video gaming, removing all of the negative aspects whilst retaining the fun and diversity it offers. The Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection service truly offers the mass market a great opportunity to fully embrace Wi-Fi"
George Polk, CEO of The Cloud, said: "Consumer Wi-Fi has finally arrived, and in a big way. Now hundreds of thousands of Nintendo users can play networked games when they are out and about, while they are waiting for a train, walking to meetings, at shopping malls, at the football, and many other places. Nintendo Wi-Fi can fill all those little spaces in the day, keeping Nintendo customers in touch with friends and gaming rivals across town and across the world. By bundling free usage in with the game, engineering the DS so it can automatically connect to the network, creating market leading games, and pioneering new communities of users, Nintendo is breaking down all the barriers to usage that have slowed the growth of Wi-Fi. Business usage of our network continues to grow quickly, but we have thousands of consumer locations that have been waiting for this kind of service to come to market. To say we are excited and impressed by their new service would be a vast understatement."
Chris Clark, CEO of Converged Mobility Operations, BT said: "Wi-Fi is increasingly becoming part of everyone's lives, whether you are a business traveller, a professional working away from the office or now someone who enjoys playing games on consoles against people round the world. We are delighted to be working with Nintendo on this partnership which will broaden the appeal of Wi-Fi from the business into the consumer market.
"We believe the future for Wi-Fi is that people will be able to access the internet, their corporate networks and their games consoles any time, anywhere using whatever device they have."
Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection will be rolled out across Europe, with different service providers and Wi-Fi partners in each country. There is really no excuse not to get online and get involved now it has been made so simple, safe and free*!
The Nintendo DS is the first Nintendo system to connect via the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection, but Nintendo Revolution will soon follow with its technology.
The launch of Nintendo Wi-Fi coincides with the return of infamous Nintendo title Mario Kart DS. Mario Kart is the first in what looks set to be a long line of titles to fully benefit from the Nintendo Wi-Fi offering. Also launching for the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection on 18th November and designed to take full advantage of the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection, 'Tony Hawk's American SK8Land' from Activision. The first 3D Tony Hawk game experience for a Nintendo handheld system.
Nintendo Wi-Fi launches in the UK on 25th November 2005, at no cost to users. The Nintendo Wi-Fi USB Connector launches on the same day for a cost of £30.
Click onto www.nintendo-europe.com for all of the most up to date official information on Nintendo.
For more information please contact the Nintendo Press Office on 0207 307 3103 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Notes to Editors:
Wi-Fi access through BT Openzone and The Cloud for Nintendo DS is purely a mechanism for users in different locations to play games against each other when they are in BT Openzone or The Cloud hotspots. Nintendo DS users will not be able to use the full Openzone service as a 'normal' user would i.e. for broadband speed email, internet access etc. Wireless access is therefore 'free' from a Wi-Fi gaming aspect only.
With Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection, online gaming is no longer a technological minefield. No one need be confused by having to complete complicated setup and configuration procedures. Unlike current offerings, Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection set up is fuss free.
The service will allow Nintendo DS gamers in the UK to link up with users across the country, and even the world, to compete against each other - Nintendo's Wi-Fi connection is a safe environment for players. Players have the option to select to play with just friends, or people of a similar skill level around the world without fear of harassment. Players do not have direct communication with each other when playing anonymously and therefore personnel details or inappropriate comments cannot be exchanged.
Users of Nintendo Wi-Fi will be able to access the service completely free* of charge. Whether connecting at home through their existing Wi-Fi broadband connection, at a retail outlet via Nintendo's bespoke download stations, or at one of over 7,500 public access Wi-Fi hotspots, users will not have to pay any additional subscription or connection charges.
- Usual broadband line rental costs apply when accessing the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection at home.
Nintendo Co., Ltd of Kyoto, Japan, is the acknowledged worldwide leader in the creation of interactive entertainment. To date, Nintendo has sold more than 2 billion video games worldwide and more than 350 million hardware units globally, creating such industry icons as MarioÆ and Donkey Kong and launched franchises like The Legend of ZeldaÆ and PokÈmon. Nintendo manufactures and markets hardware and software for its popular home video game systems, including the Nintendo 64, NINTENDO GAMECUBE, Game Boy Advance, Nintendo DS, and Game Boy - the world's best-selling video game system which has sold over 180 million units. As a wholly owned subsidiary, Nintendo of Europe, based in Grossostheim, Germany, was established in 1990 and serves as headquarters for Nintendo's operations in Europe.
About The Cloud
The Cloud offers sophisticated national wireless LAN coverage in nearly 7000 hotspot locations throughout the UK, Sweden and Germany. The Cloud's infrastructure is a multi-service provider platform, which allows providers such as ISPs, mobile operators and cable companies to offer a fully branded wireless LAN experience to their customers. With The Cloud, site owners maximise their revenue potential by supporting all major service providers at their location and customers enjoy the best possible experience and maximum ease of use.
Under a UK-wide roaming agreement, BT Openzone customers can also use the Cloud UK sites.
The company is opening more than 100 new locations each week. Launched in mid 2003, The Cloud actively partners with O2, BT, Skype, Ericsson and Intel among others to facilitate the growth of wireless broadband services across Europe. The Cloud's investors include 3i and Accel Partners, Europe.
BT is one of the world's leading providers of communications solutions serving customers in Europe, the Americas and Asia Pacific. Its principal activities include networked IT services, local, national and international telecommunications services, and higher-value broadband and internet products and services.
BT consists principally of three lines of business:
_ BT Retail, providing a comprehensive range of communications and related services to more than 20 million UK consumers and businesses.
_ BT Wholesale, providing network services and solutions within the UK to more than 600 fixed and mobile operators and service providers including the provision of broadband and private circuits.
_ BT Global Services, providing networked IT services to meet the needs of multi-site organisations globally. BT Global Services operates in more than 130 countries and also offers international carrier services.
From January 2006, there will be a fourth business called openreach. This business will be responsible for the nationwide local BT network which covers the "first mile" of wires that connects homes and businesses across the UK to their service providers. openreach will provide communications providers with services and products associated with that network.
In the year ended 31 March 2005, BT Group's turnover was £18,623 million with
profit before taxation of £2,354 million.
BT Group plc is listed on stock exchanges in London and New York. British Telecommunications plc (BT) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BT Group and encompasses virtually all businesses and assets of the BT Group.
For more information, visit www.bt.com/aboutbt