The Louvre museum in Paris is to gradually replace its audio tour guides with tour guides delivered on Nintendo 3DS units.

The current audio guides are used by only 4 per cent of the museum’s 8.5 million annual visitors. With the 3DS, visitors will be able to locate themselves within The Louvre, select themed tours including specialised guides for children, and listen to “hundreds of commentaries in seven languages about the works on display,” reports tech website physorg.

Nintendo has developed the content under the guidance of The Louvre’s curators. The Louvre’s management believes the change will appeal to a new generation who prefer to access media via a touchscreen and who are used to using such technology at home.

The museum has also refurbished its website, and smartphone and tablet apps. In the months ahead, prospective visitors will be able to download paid-for content to plan their visit.

“Digital development has become a strategic issue for museums,” declared The Louvre's director Henri Loyrette at a press conference.

“People's habits have changed. But that offers us a huge opportunity to extend the museum's territory, and build a lasting relationship with our visitors.”