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Big Mac, fries and Nintendo?
Video game maker announces free online gaming access at select McDonald's restaurants.
October 18, 2005: 11:03 AM EDT

NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - Nintendo game enthusiasts now have a new hangout.

The video game manufacturer announced Tuesday that it will offer free wireless Internet access for its handheld game system at select McDonald's restaurants.

Scheduled to start on Nov. 14, the new service would allow Nintendo DS owners to play other gamers online at the fast-food chain.

"Beginning with fee access at participating McDonald's, we have removed one of the major barriers that have kept people from going online to play games," Reggie Fils-Aime, Nintendo's executive vice-president of sales and marketing said in a statement.

The new service arose after Nintendo reached an agreement with Wayport, a Texas-based company that currently provides Wi-Fi access to almost 6,000 McDonald's restaurants across the U.S.

The companies did not detail the financial terms of the deal.

Approximately 2.2 million Nintendo DS units have been sold in the U.S. since it was released in November, the New York Times reported earlier Tuesday.

Under the free service, gamers will be able to bring a Wi-Fi enabled Nintendo DS into a participating restaurant and start playing.

"This is such an interesting direction for McDonald's," Anita Frazier, an entertainment industry analyst with the research firm NPD Group told the paper. "This could encourage kids to go to McDonald's to play games. It is like the kids' version of Starbucks' wireless hot spots."

Mario Kart DS and Tony Hawk's American SK8Land will be the first two titles offered and Nintendo plans to make other games available in the future.


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