Taiwan grandpa catches ‘em all playing Pokemon Go on 15 phones

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Taiwanese Chen San-yuan, 70, known as "Pokemon grandpa", poses with his bicycle as he plays the mobile game "Pokemon Go" by Nintendo, near his home with 15 mobile phones, in New Taipei City, Taiwan November 12, 2018. (Reuters)
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Taiwanese Chen San-yuan, 70, known as “Pokemon grandpa,” plays the mobile game “Pokemon Go” by Nintendo, near his home with 15 mobile phones, in New Taipei City, Taiwan November 12, 2018. (Reuters)
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Taiwanese Chen San-yuan, 70, known as “Pokemon grandpa,” plays the mobile game “Pokemon Go” by Nintendo, near his home with 15 mobile phones, in New Taipei City, Taiwan November 12, 2018. (Reuters)
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Taiwanese Chen San-yuan, 70, known as "Pokemon grandpa", prepares to play the mobile game "Pokemon Go" by Nintendo with his 15 mobile phones, near his home, in New Taipei City, Taiwan November 12, 2018. (Reuters)
Updated 13 November 2018

Taiwan grandpa catches ‘em all playing Pokemon Go on 15 phones

  • Attached to the front of his bicycle are 15 mobile phones which Chen, 70, uses to simultaneously play the augmented-reality game Pokemon Go
  • Chen said his gear cost more than $4,800 and he spends about $300 a month on virtual currency to use in the game

TAIPEI: Chen San-yuan turns heads as he cycles through a suburb of Taipei, Taiwan’s capital.
The reason why?
Attached to the front of his bicycle are 15 mobile phones which Chen, 70, uses to simultaneously play the augmented-reality game Pokemon Go.
The smartphone-based game requires players to ‘catch’ animated characters that appear in real locations.
Known as Pokemon Grandpa, videos of Chen and his fan-shaped phone setup cycling between “Pokestops” have gone viral on the Internet and made him a minor celebrity in Tucheng district, where he lives.
“I used one cellphone and then kept playing and playing,” Chen, dressed in a crisp, white long-sleeved shirt and pants, told Reuters Television on a recent outing.
“After a month, it became three cellphones, six cellphones, nine cellphones, 12 and then 15,” he said, crediting his grandson with introducing him to Pokemon Go in 2016.
Chen said his gear cost more than $4,800 and he spends about $300 a month on virtual currency to use in the game.
Playing on multiple phones allows him to get to higher levels in the game more quickly and capture rarer creatures, he said.
The pensioner said he sometimes plays all night thanks to the custom-made portable battery packs that recharge the phones.
Chen’s fellow players are amazed at his energy.
“He’s able to take care of fifteen cellphones at once,” said Shih Wun-sheng, 45. “From going out until returning home, Chen can remain energetic for six to seven hours, not feeling tired. That’s really impressive.”
Pokemon Go, jointly developed by Nintendo Co. and Niantic Inc, has been the biggest hit so far among games using so-called augmented reality, where digital characters are superimposed on the real world.


Silent but cheerful, mannequins enforce social distancing at Tokyo bar

Updated 2 min ago

Silent but cheerful, mannequins enforce social distancing at Tokyo bar

  • Tokyo recently began to ease restrictions put in place to prevent the spread of the coronavirus

TOKYO: They may not be helping out with chants but complete with cheerleader uniforms and pom-poms, mannequins at one Tokyo bar are helping keep customers a safe — and cheerful — distance apart.
Tokyo recently began to ease restrictions put in place to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, a respite for bars and restaurants dependent on the city’s normally thriving nightlife even if customers are not yet back in full force.
“Our restaurant looked very empty and we wanted to add more excitement,” said Arata Funabara, owner of Cheers One, a cheerleading-themed bar in the capital’s upscale Ginza district which counts both women and men among its clientele.
Other safety measures include face shields and gloves for the bar’s cheerleader waitresses who perform karaoke songs on request. The shields and gloves are also on offer for patrons.
Waitress Chinatsu Fujii said the mannequins made for a safer work environment.
“It takes a bit of getting used to but it’s reassuring that they are here and I think of them of workmates,” she said.
Japan has recorded some 17,000 confirmed coronavirus cases and more than 900 deaths.