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Sep 14th 2016

Pokemon Go Affects Mobile Network Performance – Can You Handle User Demands?

Since its global release kicked off in July, Pokemon Go has grossed over $440 million in just two months- even exceeding some of the summer’s biggest movies! It’s already being proclaimed the most popular mobile game ever released. While it uses little data, it’s still a big drag on mobile network performance due to the large number of users accessing it simultaneously. Are you prepared to handle these user demands?

Augmented Reality Game

Pokemon Go Affects Mobile Network Performance - Can You Handle User Demands?Pokémon Go is an augmented reality (AR) game that is location based. Augmented reality is a live direct or indirect view of a physical, real-world environment in real-time. Unlike virtual reality, which create a totally artificial environment, AR uses the existing environment and overlays new information on top of it. The AR elements are augmented (or supplemented) by computer-generated sensory input such as sound, video, graphics or GPS data.

Mobile Network Performance Can Be Affected

With about 20 million daily active users in the United States and 100 million downloads, data shows that Pokemon Go players spend more time on average (33 minutes a day) than Facebook (22 minutes a day).

What makes Pokemon Go unique from other games is that it’s fully mobile. The players, called Pokemon Trainers, use the app along with their phone’s GPS and camera to explore the real world and “catch” Pokemon as if they were in its world. The app uses up mobile data to operate; and all of this additional usage is impacting and straining cellular networks around the country. It’s pulling in user data at all times in order to map out the placement of Pokemon characters and is even causing some zoning boards to consider adding cellphone towers.

The app itself doesn’t actually use all that much data, especially compared to Facebook, Instagram, and other apps. However, it does generate a lot of sessions between the app and the game servers whenever Pokemon Trainers “check into a pokestop” location, find a Pokemon or battle with other players. All those sessions add up and consume network resources.

Can Your Network Handle the Demands?

Although some say Pokemon Go has peaked now, that is expected to change when new features are released. Traffic has increased in a specific area where Pokémon are prevalent, and users are demanding constant, uninterrupted coverage while they’re on the hunt.

And because of the success of Pokemon Go, you can also expect more AR apps to hit the mainstream. Add that to the fact that the number of phone users is expected to grow to 5.5 billion by the year 2020 (70 percent of the global population) according to the recent Cisco Visual Networking Index™ (VNI) Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast (2015 to 2020) and it’s clear demands are growing.

Are you ready?

It’s time to get prepared with an updated telecom design to maximize mobile network performance. At KMB, we have the experience, resources and technical skills required to meet all your telecom design and build needs. Contact us to learn more today at 855-755-6234.