New Pokémon GO Feature Makes the Game More Realistic

In what was an unexpected update, Niantic, the developer behind Pokémon Go, revealed the newest game update will bring more realistic augmented reality to the game, thanks to Apple’s ARkit development software.

That’s right, android users are getting left behind for now as Niantic works to develop a feature exclusive to Apple devices.

This new feature will begin to implement ARkit, apples new flagship development kit for developers to utilize AR more fluently.

For example, according to Niantic, Pokémon GO will use the new technology to make Pokémon occupy a fixed point in space, allowing players to walk up close to The Pokémon and observe it from all angles instead of The Pokémon just floating around in the air.

Beyond cosmetics, players will now be able to essentially sneak up on Pokémon and gain a greater amount of experience and chance to catch The Pokémon depending on their awareness level.

Awareness level is a new feature inside battles. It is represented by a bar at the bottom that raises if the player gets too close to The Pokémon during the battle, or makes too many quick moves.

Niantic said players will have to be careful trying to sneak up on Pokémon like Charizard but will find it easier to sneak up on Pokémon like Snorlax.

After testing the new update, I can personally say it is somewhat buggy. Pokémon appeared on top of objects as an overlay and didn’t quite look like they were sitting on the ground like I imagined.

“This is our first step toward making AR capabilities in Pokémon GO even more awesome, opening up the framework for greater AR experiences in the future.”

Overall, the new feature adds a layer of depth to the game, even if it is just cosmetic in nature.

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It’s Raining Pokemon

Pokemon Go players will soon see their local weather conditions reflected in-game as they are playing.

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This addition to the game comes in an update that also brings Generation 3 Pokemon to the game, adding to the limited selection of Gen 3 Pokemon that were added to the game during its Halloween event.

Niantic has not yet revealed a definitive list of the Pokemon that will be available from the start, but have confirmed Swablu, Wailord, Salamence, and Feebas, among others.

The game will reflect the current weather conditions, as well as the season. Different weather will have various effects on gameplay, such as certain Pokemon appearing more with a particular weather pattern.

The weather system will have other effects, such as “increasing Combat Power and earning more Stardust after catching a Pokemon.”

These new updates follow the release of Ho-Oh as a legendary, added at the end of November.

Niantic currently has one other project in development, Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, a game using familiar elements of Pokemon Go but within the world of Harry Potter.

The developer has confirmed, however, that this new project does not mean it will stop supporting its other games.

New Smart Umbrella Prepares Users For Rain

Ever wish your umbrella could send you reminders to take it with you if it’s going to rain that day?

That’s the idea behind the oombrella, a internet connected smart umbrella that alerts users with notifications when its going to rain and when they’ve forgotten it at home.

Created by Paris resident Clément Guillot and his team, the oombrella raised over 81,000 dollars on Indiegogo to fund the product which utilizes a number of features to make its users lives easier, but also provides live weather sharing with the companies app, Wezzoo, a commented-based weather app for iPhone and Android.

According to the products website, the oombrella has three main features beside its main use as a rain umbrella: weather alerts, the Forget Me Not Alert, and weather sharing.

The smart umbrella has several sensors embedded in the base of its handle allowing it to communicate with Bluetooth on smartphones, alerting its user if its ever left behind, like at a restaurant or on the bus.

The sensors also track light, humidity, pressure and temperature all from the base of the umbrellas handle.

These sensors then send information to the Wezzoo app, a social and real-time weather service aimed at giving a voice to users to describe the weather they are experiencing, something Wezzoo says the oombrella will do seamlessly with the use of its Bluetooth chip and weather sensors.

“The oombrella collected real time data such as temperature, pressure, humidity, and light,” a Wezzoo spokesman said. “Data is processed and shared with all of the oombrella community, allowing everyone to receive hyper-local alerts.”

In other words, a social umbrella.

“We wanted to make this umbrella unforgettable in terms of design,” Alexandre of Escabo Design Studio said. “We developed an exclusive material that makes you feel like you are holding the aurora borealis in your hands, it has effects that are amazing in the light and always changing.”

The umbrella itself comes in three colors, its rainbow-like shiny color, white, and black and features two distinct styles, classic, which features a curved handle, or the fold-able which features a straight handle.

The product is still in development but its Indiegogo campaign was successful. When the product releases, both versions of the smart umbrella will cost $79.