Pokémon Go is totally dominating the app store download charts, just as its cards did school yards and its gameboy games did the gaming industry.
What a time to be alive! Humans are flocking to the streets in pursuit of imaginary animals, and mostly full grown humans at that.
The police are actually having to issue warnings to monitor enthusiastic trainers and their somewhat dangerous and inappropriate attempts to catch ’em all.
And you know what, I totally back this.
I love the fact that Nintendo have finally adapted to mobiles, and have done it so well. We could be cliché and talk about gamers actually getting up and doing something, but we won’t, because gamers do that anyway and shouldn’t be nailed down as unfit square eyes anymore. But still, the amount this has done to boost the exercise levels of everyone playing is staggering, and should be commended. This will change the world. My good colleague Chris will be discussing that in greater detail in his upcoming post, which will be well worth a read.
Pokémon Go was released first in Australia and NZ on July 6 and only today for the rest of the world. How did us Aussies, who are late to the party on everything but the following day, get access so early. If we’re a test market, then I can grow to like that. The game has already recorded over 7.5 million downloads and is making $1.6m daily. It already has more active users than Twitter. These are RIDICULOUS stats.
Pokémon Go is your phones GPS at work, and shows the level of accuracy and detail it can go down to. The strange thing is that somehow the game knows where local landmarks are so they can act as gyms etc. How do they know this?
Niantec, now owned by Google, created a game over 4 years ago called Ingress. The game asked you to explore – to collect images and fulfil real world tasks, much as you do in Pokémon Go. Combine this with the power of Google Maps and you have a ready made augmented reality platform, and all you need is to be signed into google.
So, I’m going to talk a bit about the technology here. Make no mistake, big changes are coming. It’s the most drastic change in the gaming industry for a long time and will affect future games, as well as the mobile industry. There are going to be seeing some radical changes in the way people are using their phones, which can only compare to the likes of how social media introduced concepts and changed daily routines.
Techcrunch published this article today which shows how many permissions you are required to give Google access to in order to play the game. Hint. It’s a lot. Essentially the biggest downside to this is the fact that because of this data being collected, you can be targeted by advertising. But that’s probably the full extent of the drama, unless Niantec get hacked.
So, what does 7.5 million downloads in a week do?
Well, more people are wandering about, congregating in popular areas to capture the best Pokémon. This also means major drains on battery life for phones, so if you’re in the business of portable phone chargers, you are in the moneyz. Mobile data plans will be increased, a lot, so those that offer cheaper plans may well start becoming serious competitors for the big boys. It’s a case of who can adjust quicker. Phones with bigger screensizes may also become more popular all of a sudden.
All in all, I love change. I love shifts, and this is a big shift. Let’s see how this all pans out. But first, I need to catch ’em all.