Niantic reveals that there are no firm plans to release an improved Pokemon GO tracker tool for all users, after removing the original tracker alongside the closure of third-party sites.
Although Pokemon GO has proved to be incredibly popular with players of all kinds, as shown by the fact that users have now taken 1 billion steps while playing the game, the title has never been far from controversy. Some of this has come directly from the actions taken by developer Niantic, with one such instance being the shutting down of the tracker tool for the game. Much to the annoyance of fans, this tool has never truly reappeared - and Niantic has now confirmed that there are no finite plans for its re-release any time soon.
The news comes courtesy of the Pokemon GO developer itself, who advised that the in-beta tracker that appeared in the Bay area is unlikely to be rolled out further in the near future. A representative from the studio told Polygon that "Niantic is still testing a new type of tracking that's geo-locked to San Francisco. At this moment, there is no estimated timeline to potentially rolling it out wider."
This will no doubt prove disappointing to those players who were hoping for an official tracker tool to make its way back into the game. Controversially, Niantic was not only content with removing its own tracker, but also shutting down third party sites like PokeVision. This left a lot of users frustrated that there was no clear-cut tracker at all, be it official or not.
Initially, Niantic explained its reasons behind the removal of the game's tracker. Apparently it was first taken out so that the developer could "improve upon the underlying design," after the original feature was criticized for being confusing. However, the lack of movement from the developer since this point, aside from the small beta in San Francisco, has been a concern of fans.
Given Pokemon GO's fractious relationship with its player base, Niantic may need to think about improving upon matters soon. From the game's release, players have been picking apart the game to see exactly how it's managed to captivate users despite being a technically bad game. Even with navigational issues and a wealth of problems, Pokemon GO has managed to become a part of mobile gaming history through its impressive growth of community feeling and the nostalgic feeling of being a Pokemon trainer. Once these are worn away, players may be unlikely to stick around.
Thankfully, however, the game's development team has been making major improvements to the title over recent weeks. Just days ago, an update arrived with catch bonuses and gym training challenges, while Niantic was also able to roll out the game to even more countries. Hopefully, this shows that the developer is going to keep providing updates for different features of the game - with a new and improved tracker hopefully one of them.
Pokemon GO is out now for iOS and Android devices.