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Could this be the first successful AR chat app thanks to the popularity of Pokémon Go?

(TECH NEWS) Now, with the unrelenting popularity of Pokémon Go, this technology may have room to take off.

Designed for in-game conversation

It’s not uncommon to see auxiliary apps piggy-back on the success of successful apps. However, sometimes you get more than your bargain for.


Take Jonathan Zarra, the developer of Go chat. This auxiliary chat app pairs with the Pokémon Go so players can converse to exchange in-game information. The app hosts over a million users, is the 8th most-downloaded social networking app and would require another $4,000 worth of server space to support the new users, according to an interview with Zarra.

Share information, locations and add friends

The app works in tandem with major game markers: Pokestops, which supply critical in-game items, and gyms, where users can send their Pokémon to fight against other trainers. Users within close-enough proximity to these locations can chat with other nearby users. This can be used to share information about battling, catching Pokémon in the wild, and the location of other Pokestops and gyms. You can also add your friends to a list so you can message them more often.

It’s also proven itself to be an effective social tool for gamers. Many players have organized real-life meet ups through the app, according to an article from Polygon. In that same piece from The Verge, Zarra said a user told him he organized a date through the app.

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Frees servers for bug fixes

It seems almost shocking that the Pokémon Go app itself didn’t come with any social interaction functionality. However, given the app’s lack of ability to handle its current server requirements, it’s pretty clear that the developers behind this game are working a pretty lean model. For them, this app could be key to reducing their workload while adding a feature that users clearly want, based on the number using it right now. If it works, this strategy could help Niantic and The Pokémon Company add capabilities without a lot of their own bandwidth, freeing them up to set up new servers and fix bugs in the game.

Not the first of its kind, but possibly the first successful

This AR chat app is far from the first of its kind. Others, like TagWhat, came before it to offer information overlaid onto a map. However, as with many augmented reality apps, it simply came too early, and audience wasn’t there to help it take off. Now, with the unrelenting popularity of Pokémon Go, this technology may have room to take off.


Written By

Born in Boston and raised in California, Connor arrived in Texas for college and was (lovingly) ensnared by southern hospitality and copious helpings of queso. As an SEO professional, he lives and breathes online marketing and its impact on businesses. His loves include disc-related sports, a pint of a top-notch craft beer, historical non-fiction novels, and Austin's live music scene.

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  1. Pingback: Snapchat levels up their AR game to the tune of $40M - what now? - The American Genius

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