South Korea's top mobile operator SK Telecom Co said Monday it has decided to roll out joint marketing projects with The Pokemon Company to promote the popular mobile game that involves catching Japanese animated characters based on augmented-reality (AR) technology.
In the "Pokemon Go" game, users walk around the streets to find and collect hundreds of characters called Pokemon, which combines computer-generated images with real-life backgrounds. The game has been considered a prime example of AR technology.
SK Telecom said its official retail stores throughout the country, estimated at 4,000, will serve as "PokeStops" or "Gyms," where users can obtain virtual items or engage in a battle using characters caught, respectively.
Along with Niantic Inc, a software company which developed the game, SK Telecom said its users will be allowed to play Pokemon Go without using their monthly data through end-June. The company said the decision came as younger game players are usually subscribers of cheaper data plans.
The game has been enjoying significant popularity in some 200 countries around the world, with the combined downloads being estimated at 650 million. (Yonhap)