The immense popularity of new augmented reality app Pokemon GO leads Nintendo’s shares to soar by 10%, reaching their highest level in over two months.
Newly released augmented reality app Pokemon GO allows gamers to go out and collect Pokemon in the real world, using their mobile devices. Essentially letting players live out their wildest dreams, the app has proved immensely popular, with Pokemon GO topping the App Store on launch day. Even law enforcement is monitoring the popularity of the game as one police department rolled out a list of Pokemon GO safety tips in order to keep the most enthusiastic players out of harm’s way as the hunt for the virtual creatures continues.
But in addition to killing players’ free time (and killing players’ battery life), Pokemon GO has also had a huge impact on Nintendo’s financials. According to Reuters, following the release of the app, the company’s shares soared by 10%, seeing them reach their highest level in over two months. Nintendo now has a market value of $23 billion and according to one fund manager at a Tokyo-based UK asset management firm, “[Nintendo] has huge intangible assets like characters but it hasn’t been trying to use them seriously. But the success of its Pokemon GO shows the company has got great content.”
These new figures are a huge win for Nintendo, which has struggled to improve its revenue following several rocky years. It has been no secret that (home video game console) the Wii U has severely struggled to shift units, with the platform never living up to the 100 million sales prediction that Nintendo once set for the console. Moreover, Nintendo’s next video game platform, the Nintendo NX, isn’t launching until March 2017, but perhaps the faith that investors have in Nintendo’s mobile gaming plans will help the company‘s financials to stay steady until the new platform is released.
And, speaking of mobile gaming, the success of Pokemon GO bodes well for Nintendo’s future app plans. Nintendo surprised many when it announced that it has partnered with DeNA to release mobile apps, with the first release being social networking app Miitomo.
Reuters says that in a note to investors, Macquarie Securities said that “[Pokemon GO] has more (monetisation) than we expected; as users build their Pokémon inventory, spending money becomes needed to store, train, hatch and battle” and that microtransactions in Australia are being purchased by a large number of players rather than a minority, which could suggest that Nintendo will have similar success making a profit from the other mobile titles it has in the pipeline.
Pokemon GO is now available on iOS and Android devices in select regions.