This summer, Pokemon Go was all anyone was talking about. Wandering around town trying to catch a Pikachu or Dragonite proved to be a heap of fun, but one of the biggest pain points for the game was the fact that you had to have your phone out at all times if you wanted to locate Pokemon in your area or get your steps tracked for hatching eggs you’d discovered. Niantic announced at Apple’s press event back in September that they would be releasing a Pokemon Go app for the Apple Watch, but similar to Apple’s AirPods, that project has been delayed quite a bit. Numerous rumors have been circulating online that Niantic had ditched the project, but following official confirmation from the developer that the Apple Watch version of the game was still coming, it looks like an update to the iOS app is finally releasing that functionality.
Niantic has just started to roll out the latest update, so if you don’t see it in the App Store yet, it should be there within the next couple of days or so. Once you do get it and download it to your iPhone, you’ll be able to finally start playing Pokemon Go directly on your wrist. However, as great as it is to see the update finally hit, it is worth noting that you can’t actually catch Pokemon via the Apple Watch. In order to do that, you’ll still need to pull out your iPhone.
Just what can the Apple Watch version of Pokemon Go do then? The main features that Niantic is touting include the ability to get notifications when you’re around nearby Pokemon or PokeStops (and the ability to pick up items from said PokeStops), the option to log all of your activity within the app as workouts with Apple’s Activity app for the Apple Watch, and even get steps in that count towards eggs you’re hatching and getting Candy for your Buddy Pokemon.
Although the hype surrounding Pokemon Go has died down considerably since its initial release, this is still a very welcome addition for those that are still playing the game. It makes using Pokemon Go as an incentive to get out and be active that much easier, and it could prove to be a real benefit when working on your New Year’s resolutions next week.