O2 is to offer free wi-fi access to 3DS and DS owners across the UK.
Owners of the handhelds will now see their machines automatically connect to internet hotspots that use O2’s service. These include McDonalds, Debenhams, Pizza Hut, Costa Coffee, House of Fraser, Toby Carvery, Bluewater and large parts of London boroughs Westminster and Kensington & Chelsea.
Connection will be automatic and not require authentication, although users will need to have their machines updated to the latest firmware.
The on-screen Nintendo Zone icon will blink when entering a compatible area.
“We’re always looking at ways to improve the user experience for Nintendo 3DS owners,” Nintendo’s UK marketing and PR director Shelly Pearce stated.
“This partnership with O2 means that gamers will now have access to all of the unique online features offered by Nintendo Zone in more locations than ever before.”
O2 wi-fi MD Gavin Franks added: “Nintendo is a leading brand in the gaming world and have shown real innovation in the industry, making them an ideal partner for O2 Wifi.
“With the popularity of online multiplayer gaming continuing to rise, customers are looking for a fast, free accessible Wi-Fi connection when they’re on the move – something that we know is becoming perceived as a right, rather than a privilege. This deal will enable Nintendo 3DS gamers to automatically connect their device to O2 Wifi whenever they are in over 7,000 hotspots across the UK’s top venues, restaurants and retailers.”