Pokemon GO is Apple wringing the popular games neck

Pokémon GO: is Apple wringing the popular game’s neck?

One of the most popular mobile games in the world, Pokémon Go is getting more expensive. Developer Niantic has indicated that this will follow the price increase of apps for iPhone, so also with respect to Android. Will this be the final blow to the “once” bizarrely popular game?

As of today, apps in Apple’s App Store have become 20% more expensive. An app that used to cost $0.99 is now $1.19. Following that increase, Niantic is also raising prices in Pokémon Go on iPhone as well as Android. It is somewhat understandable, but does it kill the game?

Pokémon Go more expensive on iPhone and Android

It doesn’t matter here whether you play the game on iPhone or Android. Both are going to get a price hike in most European countries, as well as in Pakistan, South Korea and Japan. “We know that a price increase will impact all of our games – Pokémon Go, Ingress and Pikmin Bloom – and want to communicate this to our community in advance,” Niantic writes.

Pokémon GoAre fewer people going out? (Image: Niantic)

“We are doing this following the changes to the App Store and will therefore adopt them across all our platforms.” Understandably, this news was not exactly welcomed, especially among players who play Pokémon Go on Android via Google Play and the Samsung Store.

“Just because Apple is throwing up in-game prices shouldn’t mean Niantic has to do the same on other platforms,” grumbled one fan on Reddit.

Beginning of the end?

The fact that prices in the still popular game are now going up considerably may well mean that many players are going to drop out. Last year, “only” 71 million active players played the game (good for $1.21 billion in sales). The year before, there were 86 million. The peak year (2018, with 131 million players) will no longer be reached in this regard.

Another question remains: if Niantic raises the prices of Pokémon Go also on Android (and also iPhone), will other developers follow closely? Anyway, they contribute 30% of revenue to both Apple and Google for apps and in-game purchases. So it is somewhat to be expected that app developers on both platforms will equalize prices.

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