Mon | Sep 25, 2017

Patria-Kaye Aarons | Make money from Pokemon Go

Published:Tuesday | July 26, 2016 | 7:00 AM
In this Wednesday, July 20, photo, Egyptian dentist Mark Shehata, 24, uses the ‘Pokemon Go’ mobile phone application while driving in Cairo, Egypt.

Pokemon Go was launched around the world in July, and the global output plummeted. Grown men and women (but mostly men) are dedicating hours of what could be productive time to catching mythical creatures that virtually pop up on their phone screens.

If you're not familiar with how it works, here's a simplified explanation.

Just like in the cartoon made popular at the turn of the millennium, the objective is to catch Pokemon in Pokeballs; (as pervy as this all sounds, I swear it didn't come from the smut of my mind. A really suh it guh).

You walk around in the real world and your phone will vibrate, occasionally, indicating that you are near to an imaginary Pokemon. Once you arrive at the right spot, a Pokemon will pop up on your screen, and if you are quick enough, you can catch it. You can find more than 100 species of Pokemon as you roam your real-life surroundings.

It's called augmented reality because it integrates gaming characters into the real world, which you see through your camera lens.

Nobody wins the game. And you don't really do anything with the critters you catch. It's all about the bragging rights to say you either have the most - or most powerful - Pokemon.

That's it.

Some businesses with foresight, like Chilitos, have registered their locations as pokespots - where hoards gather, hoping for a chance to catch multiple creatures. Because the technology uses both GPS and mobile technology, the more players that are concentrated in one space, the more Pokemons will appear. The business owner then has a captive audience that will, hopefully, buy food and drinks while they creature catch.

 

ROAD TRIP

 

Last Saturday, my brother and his friends travelled to Portland to catch Pokemon. Portland. I thought that was lunacy, but after I got over the shock, I did come to realise that the premise of the game has the potential to be brilliant.

Here's some practical use for the technology that powers Pokemon Go. I now challenge our local tech entrepreneurs to stop playing for one second and make some money out of the thing.

Key Finder:

If we could programme our keys with the same technology, the days of lost keys would be in the past. All we'd need to do is wave our cell phones around and the key icon would pop up on screen when your phone is pointed in the right direction. It could also be the solution to finding cars lost in crowded parking lots.

Dating Reimagined:

What if you could take the guesswork out of dating? What if you could look at a crowd full of women and tell who was single and who wasn't? I can see where the Pokemon technology could help with that. Wave your phone across a room and a little cupid would pop up once you wave past a 'single and looking' lady. That way, you know who to approach and the chances of rejection are drastically reduced.

Women could also programme their husbands with a 'Taken' Pokemon, so when single ladies scan the room, all the men in committed relationships get a big X appearing in front of their faces.

Security:

It could help us store valuable items. Kind of like a GPS tracker, but much simpler and less expensive to install. We could attach the Pokemon technology to our favourite necklace, a purse.

Mapping:

We can use the Poke Players to map hard-to-reach locations right now. There's a conspiracy theory that says that some foreign government may be using this very game to map out the world in great detail and is planning their world domination through Pokemon. Though I'm hard-pressed to believe that, I can see the benefit of accessing the routes and pictures taken by the game placers to add to more detailed mapping of the world.

Pokemon may be all fun and games, but if we look at it differently, there may be real business opportunities in it. Let's find a way to channel the idleness into income before my brother decides to take a plane to Miami to catch Pokemon.

- Patria-Kaye Aarons is a television presenter and confectioner. Email feedback to columns@gleanerjm.com and findpatria@yahoo.com, or tweet @findpatria.