Two Niantic employees teased some future plans for Pokemon Go at a recent conference in Germany.
Omar Tellez (Niantic's VP of Business Development) and Michael Jones (Niantic's Strategic Advisor) spoke at the hubraum 5G Meetup at Berlin, Germany on March 28th. While the bulk of the discussion was about 5G technology, the pair did share some intriguing tidbits about some of Pokemon Go's potential plans. A Redditor attended the event and a summary of the pair's comments were eventually shared on the Silph Road subreddit.
The biggest piece of news was that Niantic was planning a major event in Dortmund, Germany this summer are expecting 100,000 players to attend. While it's possible that this is for an Ingress event, the size of the event makes it seem more likely that this is a Pokemon Go event on the scale of Pokemon Go Fest. Last year's Pokemon Go Fest was an unmitigated disaster, which is why Niantic might be looking to holding this year's event on a different continent where players are more likely to attend.
The developers also confirmed that Niantic was developing in-game chat for Pokemon Go, presumably to help players better organize local raid groups and meetups. While many Pokemon Go players use third party platforms (like Discord or Slack), an official chat would at least direct players where other players are organizing at.
Another interesting plan was for personalized Pokemon encounters. The Niantic officials discussed a potential new feature in which Pokemon Go causes specific Pokemon to spawn near a player that only that player could see. The Pokemon spawning would be a rare Pokemon not currently included in a player's Pokedex, to give them an opportunity to catch it and add it to their collection. Players would receive a notification that the Pokemon has spawned nearby, and choosing to ignore it would cause personalized spawns to happen less often.
Finally, the Niantic employees also mentioned the possibility of transferring items between players either via in-game means or via social media. However, trading Pokemon was not discussed during the conference.
Niantic also discussed the possibility of moving away from GPS location services in favor of 5G technology and Niantic's continued push to ban spoofers from the game. The pair also discussed Niantic's plans to open an office in Germany in the near future.
Of course, these are all preliminary plans, but they sound pretty amazing. Now might be the time for lapsed players to give Pokemon Go another shot, especially with the addition of quests and Mythical Pokemon to the game.