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TECHNOLOGY : AT&T Denies Partnership With Nintendo

June 07, 1989|JONATHAN WEBER | Times Staff Writer

American Telephone & Telegraph Co. denied reports Tuesday that it has reached a partnership agreement with Nintendo Co., the Japanese video game manufacturer, to provide consumers with a variety of information services.

An AT&T spokesman insisted that discussions with Nintendo have been limited to normal business contacts between a vendor and a potential customer. He said that while AT&T would be happy to have Nintendo as a customer, there has been no agreement on joint development or marketing of any new services.

Nintendo said in a prepared statement that while no "concrete agreements" had been reached, the company "feels very positively about its discussions with AT&T in the evolution of communications network technologies." The statement went on to note that AT&T "is currently prohibited from entering into arrangements involving the development of electronic information services" under the terms of a court order due to expire in August.

The Times reported Monday and the Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday that AT&T and Nintendo would work together to develop a new electronic information service.

Nintendo, which revolutionized the video game business with a computer-driven box that plays specially designed games, has indicated that it wants to tap the capabilities of the 19 million Nintendo devices now in American homes. The book-size boxes could easily be combined with a television to provide computerized access to information services such as stock prices, home shopping services or travel information networks.

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