3DS SpotPass under threat of spam

3DS could fall prey to "myriads of spam-like ads if handled it poorly"

Nintendo has weary that the 3DS's innovative SpotPass system could fall prey to "myriads of spam-like ads if we were to handle it poorly".

SpotPass is a data-sharing system within the 3DS which allows the console to automatically download game data, updates and other content as users pass by Wi-Fi hotspots.

When asked during an investors call if this provides potential for ads to be pushed to users, Iwata said: We have just announced that in our collaborations with TV broadcasters, they will distribute their 3D videos to Nintendo 3DS on a trial basis. Since a private TV broadcaster's business is based upon ad income, they are going to investigate the potential of ad income which can be gained from short but attractive 3D images."

A worrying statement that insinuates your 3DS could be bombarded with adverts. But Nintendo doesn't intend to let that happen.

"One thing which we are extremely careful about is that with SpotPass, while it is a new mechanism with the potential to explore an attractive future, Nintendo 3DS could become a platform which users consider as one for myriads of spam-like ads to arrive if we were to handle it poorly," admitted Iwata.

"In other words, if our consumers think that the content delivered to Nintendo 3DS is unnecessary or even upsetting, SpotPass will lose its potential value. So, we must create a perfect balance between the value of the information to be delivered and whether or not our consumers will welcome this information.

"Once we can do so, and if we can establish a situation where our consumers can receive a variety of valuable information which is in line with their tastes, and without the need to proactively do anything in this busy world, SpotPass will be able to show its great potential. We'd like to pursue various possibilities with many companies."

Iwata said in the same call that 3DS would likely be the first 3D device to be sold in a significant volume in the mass market, which is grabbing the interest of movie producers.