Niantic showed off Pokemon Go for the Apple Watch at the iPhone 7 debut event in September. There were rumors earlier this month that the gaming giant had actually canceled development of the watch version of the game. However, the gaming company denied all those rumors, and last week, the augmented reality-based game finally debuted on the watch, “and all I can say is that I wish it had been cancelled after all,” says Mike Wehner of BGR.
What one can’t do on Apple Watch
Pokemon Go appeared to be a natural fit for the Apple Watch because both the wearable and the location-based app have same big fitness components and motivate the user to get out of their homes, but it’s not so.
Lets talk about the things that one can do with the location-based app for Apple Watch. Players can get credit for exercising, which goes towards getting candy or hatching eggs for their buddy Pokemon. Players can spin Pokestops and get notifications when Pokemon appear, says Wehner.
Users can’t add eggs to incubators, view their collection of Pokemon, transfer, manage, or evolve their Pokemon in any way, or view their awards, Pokemon stats, moves, or any other details. Also players can’t view, manage or purchase items, see where any nearby Pokemon actually are, battle at Gyms or even catch Pokemon, says Wehner.
Why did Niantic release Pokemon Go on Apple Watch?
“The app is almost entirely useless for anyone who actually enjoys catching Pokemon,” says Wehner.
If a Pokemon is nearby, players sometimes get an alert, but then they have to take their smartphone out of their pocket or bag to actually catch the virtual creature. According to Wehner, it is an inexcusable shortcoming, considering that the Pokemon Go Plus enables you to catch nearby Pokemon without having to take out your smartphone.
The worst thing about the app is that your chances of actually getting a notification of a nearby creature or Pokestop are really bad, even when all your settings are perfectly in order. Many Apple Watch users are facing problems; just take a quick look at Reddit.
The Apple Watch app is no good, so a big question is why did the gaming giant release it anyway. Maybe the developer is planning an entirely new wearable of its own, or maybe the gaming giant wants to increase sales of the Pokemon Go Plus band.
“It’s entirely possible that it intentionally minimized the features of the Apple Watch app in order to give its own wearable a reason to exist,” says Wehner.