It all started in 2014 as an April Fool’s gag created by Google. In order to create an immersive experience for their users, Google created a game in which users looked on Google Maps for Pokémon. In order to catch one of the creatures, you would just tap on it.
In one swoop Google was able to promote Google Maps app and get people out of their seats to chase digital creatures. By merging smartphones with your real-world surroundings and characters from the popular Pokémon franchise, Google created an augmented reality game that become a pre-cursor to the Pokémon Go.
Niantic – the software development company - laid out its plans for Pokémon Go last year, and was able to secure sizable investments ($20 million US) from Google, Nintendo and Pokémon, with a promise for additional funding in the future.
Pokémon GO game relies on your smartphone’s geo-caching functionality to read your present location and to direct you to Pokémon’s hideouts. The augmented reality engine forces users to actually walk to the location in order to capture the Pokémon. Your smartphone’s camera projects the Pokémon at the Go Spawn locations.
No wonder, that with such popularity of Pokémon Go, Nintendo’s market value rose by $11 billion US.