Niantic has continually released new content to Pokémon Go since the launch of the Legendary birds over the summer. In addition to new Legendaries from both Generation I and II being added through raid battles, player are anxiously awaiting the confirmed launch of a whole new roster of Pokémon with Generation III’s arrival in December. Surprisingly, Niantic made a recent announcement that should bring even more amazing content to the game, but this time it’s not a new creature to catch.
In a blog post on Niantic’s site, CEO John Hanke announced the company has acquired the social media startup Evertoon to implement new experiences and tools. Hanke explained the new team will “bring with them a wealth of talent and experience in mobile products, tools for creativity, and community building.”
While specific uses for Pokémon Go aren’t stated in the announcement, it’s clear Niantic is beginning to build a highly-requested communication feature for the mobile game. Currently, trainers are forced to coordinate meet-ups using third-party apps, with the most common being Facebook groups and Discord channels. While it has worked for most players so far, there are still instances that require in-game communication, like instructing other players on which Pokémon to leave in Gyms as defenders.
Evertoon’s software revolved around the creation of animated shorts and emojis that could be used on various social media platforms. While Niantic may not use the same animated system for Pokémon Go‘s social feature, Hanke closes the post to confirm Evertoon’s team “will help build social systems that will benefit our entire community.” In turn, trainers should expect to hear more about social additions farther down the line in 2018, along with in-game trading and PvP battling.
Pokémon Go is available for iOS and Android.