Blog
December 14, 2018
Strengthening Our Communities: Niantic Social Impact Report 2018

At Niantic, people come first. We strive to build experiences that connect people in the real world and are continuously exploring new ways to support our passionate players and create platforms to give back to local communities. Because when you do good locally, you do good for the world.

In the early days at Niantic, we witnessed firsthand the powerful positive impact AR technology can have on local communities and civic engagement and have made it part of our mission to prioritize social impact in everything we do. In 2016, we formalized our social impact efforts by creating a division focused on making a positive impact through a variety of activities ranging from community events and service, supporting players to do good, and special campaigns.

Fast-forward to 2018, and we’ve taken what our technology and games already encourage–positive impact in the real world–and made it into a core part of the company. Below, you’ll find an infographic outlining some of the incredible feats we’ve accomplished together with the worldwide player community in 2018.

You can expect more events, activities and partnerships with local and global organizations that continue to support our players and local communities in 2019.

Niantic

If you’re looking to learn more about what Niantic has done to make a social impact worldwide, catch up on our blog posts here:

Ideas or campaign inquiries? Write to us at social-impact@nianticlabs.com.


—Yennie Solheim Fuller, Social Impact

December 11, 2018
Thank You for an Exciting Year of Community Day Events

Trainers,

Wow, what an incredible year of Pokémon GO Community Day meetups around the world! In the past twelve months, more than 100 million Trainers have come out to play during these special three-hour events. We’ve seen photos of thousands gathering to celebrate their love for Pokémon GO. We’ve been inspired by the countless smiles on the faces of those who caught their first Shiny Pokémon, and the looks of determination on Trainers still searching for their lucky encounter. We’ve seen so many vibrant groups from all over the world self-organize to gather food and clothing donations for their local charities, taking the opportunity to have fun and do good at the same time. We’ve read your fan predictions online about what’s coming next–some of which have been spot-on, and some of which, honestly, have been pretty far out there.

All in all, we are so happy with how the Pokémon GO community has responded to Community Day, and we just wanted to wrap this year up by sharing some of our favorite moments from 2018.

PokéStop
PokéStop

PokéStop
PokéStop

Around this time last year, we were faced with a pretty tough challenge. You see, at Niantic we believe that live events are the best way to experience our games; there’s something truly special about exploring the world around you alongside thousands of other passionate people. Unfortunately, it’s just not possible to host a Pokémon GO Fest or Pokémon GO Safari Zone in every city around the world (it's a work in progress!) We wanted to bring the live event experience to everyone, and so we thought, why not create a GLOBAL event which encourages Trainers to get outside and play together. And thus, Pokémon GO Community Day was born.

Since then, you have:

  • Caught 4.4 billion Community Day Featured Pokémon
  • Walked over 500 million kilometers in search of Pokémon
  • Encountered some unique Squirtle shading their eyes from the summer sun
  • Evolved over 36 million Eevee
  • Discovered 23 million Ditto disguised as the Mythical Pokémon Meltan (though some of you assumed it was a glitch!)
  • Traded 112 million Pokémon for a shot at becoming Lucky Pokémon
  • Hatched 218 million Eggs

This would not have been possible without your dedication, enthusiasm, and excitement every month of 2018. We sincerely hope that throughout it all, you had fun getting out and playing together as a community. Stay tuned for more surprises in 2019, and until then, have a Happy New Year!


—Michael Steranka, Senior Marketing Manager, Global Live Events

December 3, 2018
Accelerating Our Augmented Reality Vision With 5G Networks

Niantic

Niantic is focused on delivering amazing shared Augmented Reality (AR) experiences through the conduit of our hit real-world AR mobile games. The ongoing rollout of ultra fast 5G networks and compatible devices in the coming year presents a number of exciting opportunities for us on that front. We’re confident that 5G networks can accelerate our vision of bridging the physical and digital worlds with advanced AR functionality such as real-time synchronous multiplayer AR experiences in a shared environment, persistence, and visual occlusion through contextual computer vision.

These advanced features, which are part of our Niantic Real World Platform, will take full advantage of 5G’s ultra-low latency (i.e.: 1 millisecond in 5G vs. 50 milliseconds in 4G^), and increased throughput (i.e.: up to 50 Gigabits/sec in 5G vs. 20 Megabits / sec average in 4G^) to provide seamless experiences for our users.

To pursue this vision, we announced a partnership with Deutsche Telekom–and their MobiledgeX Edge Servers and 5G network–in October to create dramatically scalable end-user experiences. Also, recently in London, we announced our support for GSMA’s AR/VR forum. This industry-wide initiative encourages all parties to collaborate on accelerating the delivery and deployment of a uniform API for 5G cloud-based AR services, including mobile edge computing (MEC). Also, we’ll be participating in the Open Edge Initiative with Carnegie Mellon University later this year, so keep an eye out for our contributions there.

All of this adds up to more immersive, exciting, and entertaining gameplay experiences. At Niantic, we’ve long celebrated adventures on foot with others, and with 5G networks and devices, people around the world will be able to experience those adventures faster and better.

^https://5g.co.uk/guides/4g-versus-5g-what-will-the-next-generation-bring/


—Omar Téllez, VP of Growth