"POKÉMON GO" New Tech Revolution?

New Tech Revolution?


Pokémon Go is a free-to-play location-based augmented reality mobile game developed by Niantic. It was initially released in July 2016 for iOS and Android devices, starting with the U.S. and Australasia, with Asian and European releases to follow.

The game allows players to capture, battle, and train virtual Pokémon who appear throughout the real world. It makes use of GPS and the camera of compatible devices. Although the game is free-to-play, it supports in-app purchases of additional gameplay items. An optional companion Bluetooth wearable device, the Pokémon Go Plus, is planned for future release and will alert users when a Pokémon is nearby. The game received a mixed critical reception. However, it was the most downloaded smartphone app in the U.S. in its first three days of release and was a boon to publisher Nintendo's stock value.
As of July 12, the average daily usage of the app exceeded Snapchat, Tinder, Instagram, and Facebook.

The game was released in the United States, Australia, and New Zealand on July 6, 2016. Due to server strain from high demand upon release, Niantic CEO John Hanke stated that the release in most other regions was "paused until [Niantic was] comfortable" fixing the issues.

 Upon 24 hours after its release, Pokémon Go topped the American App Store's "Top Grossing" and "Free" charts. In fact, the game has become the fastest game to top the App Store and the Google Play, beating Clash Royale. As of July 11, 2016, Pokémon Go has an estimated 7.5 million downloads in the U.S. It was installed on more than 5% of Android devices in the US, according to SimilarWeb. In the week following the game's release, Australian servers had problems in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane due to the game's popularity.


Developer(s)     Niantic
Publisher(s)     Niantic
Distributor(s)     The Pokémon Company
Composer(s)     Junichi Masuda
Series     Pokémon
Engine     Unity
Platform(s)     iOS, Android
Release date(s)         AUS July 6, 2016    US July 6, 2016
Genre(s)     Augmented reality

Mode(s)     Single player, multiplayer

The idea for the game was conceived in 2013 by Satoru Iwata of Nintendo and Tsunekazu Ishihara of The Pokémon Company as an April Fools' Day collaboration with Google called Pokémon Challenge, with Tatsuo Nomura of Google Maps, who then became a senior project manager at Niantic, at the center of the project. In 2015, Ishihara dedicated his speech at the game's announcement on September 10 to Iwata, who had died two months earlier. The decision to create the Go Plus rather than create a smart watch app was to increase uptake among players for whom a smart watch is prohibitively expensive.

On March 4, 2016, Niantic announced a Japan-exclusive beta test would begin later that month, allowing players to assist in refining the game before its full release. The beta test was later expanded to other countries. On April 7, it was announced that the beta would expand to Australia and New Zealand. Then, on May 16, the signups for the field test were opened to the United States. The test came to an end on June 30.


Investors were buoyed by the response to the initial release of Pokémon Go on July 7, 2016, with Nintendo's share price rising by an initial 10% and by July 11, 2016, shares had risen to as high as 25%. Despite Nintendo only owning a 33% stake in the Pokémon franchise and will receive only 30% of the Pokémon Go sales revenue, the post-release share price rise amounted to increase in value of approximately $14.5 billion. The Financial Times believed that investors were speculating not on Pokémon Go as such, but on future Nintendo app releases being as successful as the company moves into the mobile app market—an area it has historically been reluctant to enter in the belief it would damage its portable console sales. 

As of July 12, the average daily usage of the app exceeded Snapchat, Tinder, Instagram, and Facebook.

Nintendo plans to release four more smartphone app games by March 2017, and investors remarked that Pokémon Go showed Nintendo still has some of the "most valuable character intellectual property in the world" with franchises such as Super Mario, The Legend of Zelda, and Metroid.

Safety concerns and controversy 

Pokémon Go generated safety concerns mostly due to distraction during play and the ability for individuals to be lured to a certain real-life area by in-game rewards. On launch day, the Northern Territory Police, Fire and Emergency Services reminded players to "look up, away from your phone and both ways before crossing the street". Furthermore, the app has led players to congregate near strangers' homes, as in the case when a Pokémon Gym was placed near a church converted to a house. Other incidents include minor fall injuries and armed robberies. Players outside of populated, urban areas criticized the lack of PokéStops and gyms in their local area.


Pokémon Go received mixed reviews, having an aggregate score of 66 out of 100 on Metacritic. Pocket Gamer awarded it a score of 9 out of 10, saying "Despite its problems, Pokémon GO is an immensely enjoyable experience". Terri Schwartz of IGN praised its effectiveness in promoting exercise. Meanwhile, Matt Peckham of Time Magazine criticized the game for the game's frequent crashes and for its shallow gameplay.


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