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'Pokemon Go' sets app-store record, but fails to boost Nintendo

Viral video game "Pokemon Go" has been downloaded more in its first week than any other app in history, Apple said on Friday.

"Pokemon Go," an augmented reality game where players can catch canonical Pokemon animated creatures in real-life locations, is an app-store success story, Apple said.

Indeed, Apple could get billions from "Pokemon Go," Needham & Company Managing Director Laura Martin estimated in a recent note.

Pokemon Go app on an iPhone, Tokyo, Japan, July 22, 2016.
Toru Hanai | Reuters
Pokemon Go app on an iPhone, Tokyo, Japan, July 22, 2016.

Since the game achieved penetration of 6 percent of the U.S. population after just 10 days, Martin predicts 20 percent penetration at maturity.

"Apple has an option on all future hit games over the iOS platform," Martin said on CNBC's "Halftime Report" this week.

The "Pokemon Go" halo effect may reach beyond Apple. Technology intelligence firm App Annie estimates that approximately 1 in 10 Americans with smartphones play the game every day.

The same boost may not be true for Nintendo, which owns a minority stake in the Pokemon Company, reports said.

Shares of Nintendo tumbled about 10.5 percent Friday after the company told a Bloomberg reporter that financial impact from "Pokemon Go" would be limited. The company's shares have risen more than 60 percent over the past month as the game has gained momentum.

It is likely the Pokemon Company is operating under an independent strategy from Nintendo in the app business, Mia Nagasaka, an equity analyst with Morgan Stanley MUFG Securities, told CNBC earlier this month.

Nintendo did not immediately respond to CNBC's request for comment.

— Reporting by CNBC's Josh Lipton. Contributions by Saheli Roy Choudhury, Aza Wee Sile, Tae Kim and Arriana McLymore.