The US military might shut down Pokémon Go. At least, temporarily.
Exercise Red Flag, an advanced aerial combat training exercise executed by the US Air Force, is in full swing, and this year’s training is on a larger scale than usual. As a result, the training is causing some areas to have a GPS blackout—which is exactly what Pokémon Go uses to run.
Part of exercises are meant to specifically test how well pilots can function when GPS systems are jammed and to test out systems that may be used as a backup, according to The Drive. This means that you shouldn’t panic if GPS suddenly goes down, since it’s likely part of a planned maneuver. GPS also should only be down for a short time, not one continuous outage.
Pokémon Go uses GPS to determine each players’ location and let the game know whether a player is close to a Pokémon, how much distance they’ve traveled to hatch eggs, and whether they’re near anything like a Gym or a Poké Stop. While this means that most of the game’s functions could be down during testing, players should still be able to buy items, check their Pokémon, and transfer away ones they don’t want—basically, everything in the game that doesn’t depend on your location.
The main areas affected will be those near the Nevada Test and Training Range, though effects may be seen as far as California, Nevada, Oregon, Wyoming, Arizona, Utah, Colorado, Montana, and New Mexico. Testing is expected to go until mid-February.
Source: The Drive