ARE YOU PLAYING?
What is Pokémon GO? It’s an “augmented reality” app based on the 1990s Nintendo video game franchise that allows users “to find and catch more than a hundred species of Pokémon as you explore your surroundings.”
Basically, the game uses the GPS locator information on your smart phone to direct you to Pokémon characters in your vicinity.
“As you move around, your smartphone will vibrate to let you know you’re near a Pokémon,” the game’s website explains. “Once you’ve encountered a Pokémon, take aim on your smartphone’s touch screen and throw a Poké Ball to catch it. Be careful when you try to catch it, or it might run away!”
What’s amazing about Pokémon GO isn’t how many people are playing it – it’s how much of their time (or their employers’ time) they are investing in the game.
According to SimilarWeb, Pokémon GO users (on Android devices, anyway) were spending an average of 43 minutes and 23 seconds per day using the app.
Take a look …
(Click to enlarge)
(Pic via SimilarWeb)
Pokémon GO usage among Android users far outpaces the time they spend on WhatsApp (30:27), Instagram (25:16), Snapchat (22:53) and Messenger (12:33).
In fact people have been playing the game everywhere … no matter what else is happening around them.
One teenage girl in Wyoming actually found a dead body while she was playing the game.
The phenomenon is real, people – and it’s causing stock in Kyoto-based Nintendo to soar. According to The Wall Street Journal, the company’s market value has jumped by a whopping $9 billion … in a matter of days.
Where could Pokémon GO wind up having a negative impact? America’s sluggish economy – which desperately needs a surge in productivity. Of course we live in a welfare state that offers free “Obamaphones” and a never-ending array of distractions, so …
Also, we can’t really expect government bureaucrats (in core and non-core functions) to focus on the “people’s business” when there are Pikachu to be found, right?