Pokémon Go Users Are Declining

In the beginning of July, a wave of nostalgia hit everyone who grew up in the ’90s: Pokémon was back.

Pokémon was a big part of any kid’s life while growing up in the ’90s. Kids were collecting the cards, having battles, begging their parents for the Pokémon backpack that they HAD to have, and watching the TV show like it was some form of religion.

Even if you weren’t really into the phenomenon at the time, you pretended to be because you were seven, and what else was there to do when all your friends were obsessed?!

This July, Pokémon was back in the form of an app that was free to download on any smartphone, giving all those ’90s kids the game and culture that they missed and loved at the tips of their fingers.  

The Success of ’90s Nostalgia

The weekend of the game’s release, everyone was playing without shame. Every place I went, there were people glued to their phones (more so than usual) trying to catch Pokémon, hatch their Pokémon eggs, and take over gyms in the area.

It was kind of amazing to see everyone walking around and interacting with each other. There was a sense of camaraderie in everyone doing the same thing… living out their childhood dreams of being a Pokémon trainer.

The app launched on July 6, and by July 23, there were 20 million daily users in the U.S.

The usage for the app was so explosive that it had other companies like Facebook Inc., Instagram, and Snapchat in a little bit of a panic.

Victor Anthony, a senior analyst at Axiom Capital Management, had this to say about the app’s success:

Given the rapid rise in usage of the Pokémon Go app since the launch in July, investors have been concerned that this new user experience has been detracting from time spent on other mobile focused apps.

Pokemon go Screenshot

The real breakthrough with the app was the emergence and success of augmented reality gaming. The app introduced it to the public, and the public was really enjoying it.

Augmented reality is the direct or indirect live view of a physical, real-world environment whose elements are augmented by computer-generated sensory input like sound, video, graphics, or GPS data.

Pokemon Go Screenshot
After the launch of the app, Nintendo Co Ltd. shares were parabolic in the U.S. The stock increased 9.3% in just a week of Pokémon Go’s release.

The Declining Trend

The craze would soon come to an end — like all popular culture novelty… it tends to wear off. But what did that mean for augmented reality in gaming?

Would this be a technology that would change the way people experienced gaming? Would it impact an entire industry? Most of the credit for augmented reality’s recent success goes to the nostalgia of Pokémon. 

Google Trends for virtual reality and augmented reality indicates a decline for augmented reality, while interest in virtual reality continues to stay in the lead.

Google Trends on VR vs AR

Virtual Reality vs. Augmented Reality

Augmented reality has its perks and could definitely be a useful resource in terms of educational resources or for industrial, military, and medical applications. However, it might need a little more development to catch the appeal of the public.

Virtual reality is in the lead of augmented reality for a reason, and that’s because companies like Disney, Microsoft, and Alphabet are heavily investing in virtual reality. They’re aware that virtual reality will have more of an impact on the tech world, and it’ll be very versatile.

Disney (NYSE: DIS) recently funded $65 million in Jaunt VR. Jaunt has developed an end-to-end cinematic VR content-creation platform. This technology will immerse the user in the content. Jaunt’s camera features a high-quality 360-degree camera capture.

Microsoft’s (NASDAQ: MSFT) HoloLens is the first fully self-contained holographic computer, which will allow you to interact with holograms in the real world. HoloLens interacts both augmented reality and virtual reality to immerse a user into a uniquely simulated world.

Alphabet’s (NASDAQ: GOOGL) Project Tango is a solution for indoor navigation. The American Museum of Natural History has already signed up. This would impact the retail world by giving customers the opportunity to preview how an item would look on them in their own home.

Virtual reality’s impact won’t be limited to one industry — it’s already crossing over to many different industries, like movies and indoor navigation. It isn’t relying on a once-popular card game for its future success, but instead relying on the infinite possibilities of hardware and software that continue to be developed and improved to better enhance the way we see the world.

Until next time,

Jennifer Clark
Pro Trader Today