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How to get (addicted to) Pokemon Go in the UK, the game that has overtaken WhatsApp, Instagram and Tinder

The last week has seen a new app take the world by storm. Pokemon Go is an Augmented Reality (AR) game, brought to us by the 20 year old Nintendo Franchise, that sees users walk through the real world, capturing virtual Pokemon. It has come out of nowhere, but is already re-writing the rule books on mobile and digital engagement, as user numbers from a standing start a week ago are through the roof. And this all with the caveat that Pokemon Go is still not officially available in the UK.

Battenhall Pokemon Go

Here are a couple of the Pokemons I caught yesterday, one in our office

The headlines on Pokemon Go for you, in case you’re not yet familiar:

  • The success of Pokemon has sent Nintendo’s share price soaring. It rose 25% yesterday, and 12% today, with a total value now at $30bn.
  • Within two days of launch in the US, Pokemon Go was installed in 5% of Android phones, which is more than Tinder.
  • Users are on Pokemon Go on average for 43mins per day, which is more than Instagram or WhatsApp.
  • It is available officially only in the US, Australia and New Zealand. More countries soon to follow.
  • One man has been sacked for wanting to pay Pokemon Go so bad.
  • One person’s house was turned into a venue (a ‘gym’) on Pokemon Go causing real life chaos.
  • Some reports say thieves are using Pokemon Go to lure victims using virtual bait.
  • Nintendo is planning a dedicated handheld device to play the game.

Brands are already looking to get in on the act, as the game allows virtual objects (like Lures) to be placed in real world venues (at Pokestops, which tend to be in areas of local interest, like restaurants, parks and offices) something that is causing mixed reactions with users and unwitting bystanders.

Here at Battenhall we have a Pokemon Go Pokestop. Just look up our address, and when you arrive, take a look around in Pokemon Go. Pokemons tend to hang out near Pokestops, so thats a reason to pop over if I ever hear one! You won’t actually need to come inside, but give us a buzz if you’re in the vicinity!

If you want to start playing Pokemon Go, and haven’t figured it out just yet, just do some Googling. There are plenty of places you can get your hands on the official app, even if you’re not in the US, Australia or New Zealand. Be really careful with what you download, make sure you’re staying safe and not getting a virus, but you should try here for iOS and here for Android for starters.

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