Pokemon GO Made $1.2 Billion In 2016

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Thanks to its ability to attract non-gamers, nostalgic characters, simple mechanics, the novelty of augmented reality and its social nature, Pokemon GO reached a level of success in 2016 that eludes even some of the most successful traditional video games.

Record downloads, engagement and of course - revenue.

The exact figures were revealed in the App Annie 2016 Retrospective:

Contrary to publishers' concerns, we have noted that it did not appear to eat into other games' revenue or usage. Since the game attracted more than just traditional mobile gamers and was often played during users' traditionally "non-mobile" time, the game did not seem to prosper at the expense of other games.

The game rose in a breathtaking fashion, reaching US$800 million (AUD$1.05 billion) in consumer spend in 110 days (by the end of 2016, the game reached over US$950 (AUD$1.2 billion) million in consumer spend). This was far faster than some of the most successful mobile games of all time.

To put Pokemon GO's success in a broader perspective, its global consumer spend in 2016 exceeded the total worldwide box office gross of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. Pokemon GO's monetisation in 2016 demonstrates the viability of novel gameplay ideas in mobile gaming, the reports says.

Pokemon GO wasn't just impressive for it's revenue, though - it's user engagement was extraordinary. The time spent in in Pokemon GO was nearly as high as that of the next 19 biggest games combined.

Following its initial success, it was able to boost usage by re-engaging users with its special Halloween in-game event. On the event's second day, total time spent was more than twice as high as it was on the day prior to starting. Such huge success for an in-game event proves that the lives of mobile games can (and should) be extended periodically by new content, according to the report.

"Pokemon GO's success has done more to familiarise consumers with the concept of augmented reality (AR) than perhaps any other piece ofsoftware (or hardware, for that matter)," the report states.

What makes Pokemon GO so important for the app space, though, is that this familiarisation didn't take place inside our homes with specialised AR devices. Instead, it happened in the real world with mobile phones.

"If this is any indication," says the reports, "the future of AR is in mobile apps."


    The nostalgia tag always rankles, it's thrown around too easily. If we're being honest, people are only interested in Resident Evil 7 or hell Red Dead 2 because of 'nostalgia' aren't they?

    Or is there a statute of limitations I haven't read in the great big book of gamer-on-the-internet by-laws...

      Halo only lives on in its near dead state due to nostalgia of the first real FPS many played.

    Hopefully some decent portion of that revenue went to the developers on the game, but most likely the owners of the Pokemon IP took 99% of the profit and some developers were laid off at Christmas (is how it usually works).

      Nintendo have shares in about a third of The Pokemon Company and didn't get a huge percentage so I'd say Niantic got a lot. Seems no one gets that still. The huge Nintendo stock jump was pretty funny.

        Apple took 30% and similar Google App store... then Niantic took the rest, paying only comtractural licensing fees/terms... the Nintendo got their share. Which for Nintendo wouldnt effect their profit margin much and only really saw brand recognition which over inflated their share price before it adjusted

          Might of helped sell some more copies of sun and moon.

        And apple! Good lordy do they do well from the app store!

          And Google of course. More people have Android phones than apple.

            True, although because Android also serve the lower end of the market with cheaper phones, you get the really cheap people who will never spend anything on a 'app'. The iOS app store makes far more per user because of this, and I think overall.
            This is why the iOS store has way more paid apps while on Android it will be free and ad supported with an IAP to remove the ads or whatever.

            Funnily enough, most of Google's income is still from advertising. Android is small fry compared to that.

    The Self-Styled Whole Of The Internet:
    "But... but Pokemon GO is DEEAAAAAD (because I don't play it anymore, and everything that drops off my radar must obviously drop off everyone's radar because I am the entire world)!"

      Similar to "I don't like Nintendo because it's difference to the PC-lite consoles confuses and scares me, therefore Nintendo are doomed because surely everyone in the world has exactly the same opinions as me."

        They're almost as bad as the "I still love Nintendo even though most people have moved on to more sophisticated gaming. Why isn't Wii U a success?!" crowd.

    Records downloads and engagements... which they ended up losing.

    Despite its revenue it was not a successful business model and rollout... the number of unistalls and lose of users turned a multi billion dollar into

    How many active users over time, revenue over time... on a graph it must look like a crash at the end of the day they have to face the Alphabet boards CEO & CFO and explain how the marketing, business plan and analytics were not in place to capitlise on its easily forseeable success.

    1 Billion... should be 20 Billion easy.

    Niatic business plan at one point was wait until player interest died off so their small studio can better manage users expectations (ie the ones that stick around eont care we have only superficial updates planned).

    Wow that's enough to make it a platinum game if it had been sold as a full price title ($109)!

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