Foto Adrián Soto.13/7/2016. San José y Sabana. Usuarios de la aplicación Pokemón Go, juegan en diferentes partes de la ciudad. Foto Adrián Soto.
Pokemón Go in downtown San Jose (by the Correos – post office) on July 13, 2016. Photo by Adrián Soto from notytech.com

Although the Pokémon Go Mobile application has not been formally launched in Costa Rica, the more impatient players have found a way to install the game on their smartphones (iPhone and Android devices).

But what is Pokémon Go? According to an article by Vox 9 questions about the game you were too embarrassed to ask, “the game is an inescapable force of nature….and not even that great or stunning of a game…but playing the game is like giving your brain a warm, relaxing bath, the warm fuzziness of nostalgia, and our human thirst for escapism.”

Although it may seem everyone is playing Pokémon Go, and since you are not (for if you were you wouldn’t be here reading this) and may be feeling left out, consider this:

– According to experts on last Monday,  Pokémon Go has been downloaded around 7.5 million times.

– For context, in 2013 the US Census Bureau estimated that there were 242,470,820 adults in the United States, and according to a 2016 Pew report, 72 percent of adults have smartphones. That means roughly 174,579,000 adults have smartphones they could use to play Pokémon Go; 7.5 million is a fraction of that.

Is the game any good? Alex Abad-Santos from Vox says, “Pokémon Go is fun, but I don’t think it’s very good.”

Is Pokémon Go dangerous? Pokémon Go is a lot like texting. Its augmented reality setting that uses your smartphone camera is distracting; even though you’re theoretically paying close attention to your surroundings, you’re doing so through a camera lens with the aim of spotting and catching Pokémon all around you. Crossing the street into traffic or walking into the ocean are both distinct possibilities with this game. Getting lost is a risk too.

Thecrpost.com came up with this piece, 5 ways to die playing Pokemon Go in Costa Rica. The online publication in presenting the top 5 ways to die playing Pokemon Go in Costa Rica includes strong images of “Getting Hit by a Car”, “Getting Hit by a Train” and “Getting shot for your phone” while playing the game. Perhaps the appeal in Costa Rica is, that according to thecrpost.com’s friend Bob, “Costa Rica is also ranked at #2 for illegal downloads which is why you will see so many Ticos playing it already.”

Train poke by Thecrpost.com

Train poke by Thecrpost.com

How much data and battery life will I use while playing Pokémon Go? You will use data. Claro, Movistar and Kolbi (ICE) are loving this if you don’t have an unlimited data plan for your smartphone.  Be careful. Not so much if you are on unlimited, and even if you do, remember, Kolbi at least, will take you down to 3G after 6Gb of data transfer.  As to battery life, the constant use of the camera will quickly drain you battery. Dimmning your screen will help you run a little longer, without a charging station nearby, the Pokémons will pass you by.

An overnight sensation?
Despite many believing that Pokémon is an overnight sensation, something new to reach your smartphone, it has actutally been around a long time (in tech standards). The name Pokémon is the romanized contraction of the Japanese brand Pocket Monsters (ポケットモンスター Poketto Monsutā?).

The Pokémon franchise was created by Satoshi Tajiri in 1995, beginning as a pair of video games for the original Game Boy, developed by Game Freak and published by Nintendo. Pokémon is the second-most successful and lucrative video game-based media franchise in the world, behind only Nintendo’s Mario franchise. Tajiri first thought of Pokémon around 1989 or 1990, when the Game Boy was first released.

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Pokémon Go was released in July 2016 for iOS and Android devices. The game quickly became one of the most used smart device apps after launching, surpassing the previous record held by Candy Crush Saga in the United States, and was a boon to the stock value of Nintendo. Upon 24 hours after its release, Pokémon Go topped the American App Store’s “Top Grossing” and “Free” charts The game has become the fastest game to top the App Store and Google Play, beating Clash Royale.  The average daily usage of the app on Android devices exceeded Snapchat, Tinder, Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.  By July 15, approximately 1.3 million people were playing the game in the Netherlands, despite the app not being officially released in the country.

 

PS Looking to install Pokémon Go on your smartphone in Costa Rica? Notytech has the link (in Spanish) to the download app for the iPhone and Android and a list of compatible smartphones.


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