Niantic, the creator of mobile game phenomenon Pokemon Go, is teaming up with major US wireless carrier Sprint in transforming the latter’s outlets into PokeStops and Gyms. For good measure, Sprint’s stores will also be fitted with in store charging stations so that Pokemon Go players can play for an extended period of time. This move grants the mobile operator the distinction of being Pokemon Go’s first partner in the United States, similar to what happened with McDonald’s in Japan, wherein more than 3,000 of its branches were turned into Gyms during the launch of the insanely popular app. In the case of Sprint, its partnership with Niantic is impeccably timed just before a major update to the mobile game is scheduled to be rolled out before the start of 2017 (more on this later).
On top of all that, Pokemon Go is also partnering with coffee giant Starbucks in turning 7,800 Starbucks locations into PokeStops and Gyms. Moreover, Starbucks will also be offering a new Pokemon Go edition of its Frappuccino.
As for the upcoming update, there is some talk that it will bring nearly a hundred new Pokemon characters for mobile users to capture and train. The fresh Pokemon additions will reportedly be from the Pokemon Gold and Silver, also known as the second generation to fans of the anime. Niantic has promised to release more details about the soon to be rolled out update this coming December 12th. According to the official statement released by the company, fans of the mobile game are enjoined to watch out for new information on various social media channels.
When it made its debut on iTunes back in July earlier this year, Pokemon Go quickly became the most popular mobile app. But about five months since it was launched, the game has steadily decreased in popularity as users started to get bored of the same Pokemon when playing the game. The upcoming update should liven up things a bit.
To Niantic’s credit, it has been keeping itself busy in the last few months re-energizing people’s engagement to the game in various ways. Last Halloween for instance, the games developer launched special promotions, and then followed it up with a new round of promos just in time for Thanksgiving. Not content with that, the company also introduced a new Pokemon character, Ditto, which can disguise itself as any other Pokemon critter and the only time players can detect its true identity is when it gets caught.
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