Pokémon Go has created a sensation like never before. People have started coming out of their homes and gathering to catch the Pokémon along with others. It is a location-based augmented reality mobile game developed by Niantic. The game makes use of GPS and the camera of smartphones to let the users capture, battle and train virtual Pokémon. The Pokémon appear on the screen as if in the real world.
People all over the world, especially the millennials, have been going crazy since its release. The integration of reality with the virtual world has given way to some strange happenings. Here is a list of crazy incidents and facts about Pokemon Go for your amusement and information.
1. Pokémon Go was first realized as an April Fools Day prank when Google teamed up with The Pokémon Company for the event in 2014.
According to an interview with Setsuto Murai and Kento Suga, representative president and marketing manager of Niantic Japan respectively, the April Fools Day challenge involved capturing Pokémon on Google Maps.
Coming up with ideas for April Foos Day has been part of Google’s culture. The teams would then work on those ideas and make them come true. According to Murai, that sense of fun also became part of Niantic after its formation and contributed to the development of their products like Ingress and Pokémon Go.(source)
2. Since its release, Pokémon Go has been downloaded by more than 50 million users and the count is still rising.
The game was first launched on July 6, 2016. In just two days after its launch over 5% of Android users in the United States alone installed the app. Within a week it reached more than 10 million and 30 million by July 20. Though the App Store of iOS hasn’t yet released the exact download statistics, the game holds top position there as well.
The game was praised for popularizing location-based gaming and augmented reality through out the world. It also found immense approval among genderfluid groups for letting the user choose style instead of gender.(1, 2)
3. In just a week of its launch, Pokémon Go sent up Nintendo’s stock through the roof by adding $7.5 billion to the company’s market value. In US on iPhones alone it is making $1.6 million per day.
Pokémon Go came as a savior for Nintendo. Before it came the company was experiencing losses for the first time in its entire history. While Nintendo doesn’t entire own the game but has serious stakes invested in Pokémon Company and Niantic, one cannot deny the fact that the game does bring it profits.(source)
4. On 12 July almost 21 million active users engaged in Pokémon Go making it the most popular game ever in the US, beating Candy Crush at its peak.
According to surveymonkey there were 21 to 22 million daily active users in the United States on 20 July. The daily usage of the app on an average on Android devices soon surpassed that of Snapchat, Tinder, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. The usage reached its peak on 14 July with over 25 million users, but has started seeing a slight decline in the numbers.
The decline in the number of downloads, of course, is predictable as there can only be so many people on the planet who are mobile game players. Pokémon Go or not, once all those who would play have downloaded the game, the downloads are bound to decrease. But considering the influence it has on the players, we can safely say it is here to stay.(1, 2)
5. Since the release of Pokémon Go, the prices of all old Pokémon games have gone up 100% and the sales have increased by 200%.
The nostalgia of Pokémon has begun winning over the minds and the pockets of players. Even though the game isn’t yet launched in several countries, people are going crazy catching up with the old games. Pokémon Red, for example, was around $28, which changed to $35 within a few days after the release of Pokémon Go, and later gone up to $50.(source)
6. Pokémon Go officially became more popular than porn when more people started searching for it since July 11 on Google.
Since the day of its launch the augmented reality game managed to garner huge unprecedented response from around the world. The Pokémon searches on Google were especially high in the countries it was first released in, United States, Australia and New Zealand. Other countries such as Netherlands and Canada also have shown increased searches about the game.(source)