Nintendo’s StreetPass Relay Revealed

Thursday, July 18th, 2013

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A while back, Nintendo announced that they would be working on a way to improve StreetPass capability for the West. The reason for this was because the Western regions have their populations more spread out than Japan – where the population is more condensed, allowing for more StreetPasses. Today, via a Nintendo Direct Mini, Nintendo has revealed how the new StreetPass functionality will work.

Streetpass Relay | Nintendo

Nintendo will be using the existing Nintendo Zone hot spots (over 29,000 in the US; over 25,000 in Europe). These hotspots are in places such as Best Buy, Future Shop, Boingo hotspots at major U.S. airports, and AT&T Wi-Fi Hot Spots at places like McDonald’s, Starbucks, and Barnes & Noble.

Here’s how it works: When you go to one of these Nintendo Zone hot spots, you will collect the StreetPass data from the previous person. Your data will then be held for the next person to collect. Nintendo is calling this a “StreetPass Relay” as data gets picked up and dropped off by everyone involved. So, for those wondering since the initial announcement about how your data would be held and how long for, here is your answer.

Streetpass Relay - Receiving Data | Nintendo Streetpass Relay - Leaving Data | Nintendo
Receiving Data Leaving Data

No specific information was given as to when this will be implemented. However, they did say that it will be part of a 3DS update that will be coming in the next few weeks.

About Jeff Neuenschwander

Jeff has been a supporter of the website and campaign since the beginning. Joining in for E3 2012, he worked his way up the ranks quickly, making it to the Editing Manager post at the beginning of 2013. Jeff has a wide variety of tastes when it comes to gaming and pretty much likes anything that is quirky, although his favorite genres are Action, Platforming, and RPG. Outside of gaming, Jeff is a musician, being trained as a trombonist for Jazz and Classical music, and holds a degree in Sound Recording.




  • Guest

    Population isn’t the issue. It’s that many titles sell 50,00 copies, total…

  • HPN

    Population density isn’t the issue. It’s that many titles sell 50K copies in North America, total. Even living in densely populated San Francisco, since launch date, I think I’ve gotten a total of 2 StreetPasses for Fire Emblem, which was one of Nintendo’s better selling titles of late…

    • Pedro Rosas

      Sucks for you, I have mine maxed out, same for Soul Hackers and Kid Icarous

  • Joshua J. Slone

    Regardless of whether most games sell many copies, there’s enough StreetPass functionality in the free system features and minigames that it does stick out to me when it’s nearly 2.5 years since launch and I’ve only ever StreetPassed with family.

  • Pedro Rosas

    And here I was hoping to get more Street Passes

  • James Best

    Finally. Maybe now I can get all those blasted pink puzzle pieces.

  • BruceTD

    I go to conventions so this doesnt really affect me (one con usually fills out ALL my puzzle pieces) but its still cool, I can share the wealth.

  • MMGM

    Wait, so if someone is carrying at least 2 3DS’ and they go to one of these relay areas, does the first 3DS get the data from the previous 3DS that has been there and sends in its own data? If so, does that mean that the other 3DS that the person has will just get the data from his/her other 3DS before sending in its own data?

  • Klagmar

    So we have to travel to a specific location just to get ONE Spotpass? Seems a little lackluster if you ask me.