After announcing Pokémon GO for Apple Watch, Niantic CEO John Hanke has indicated that the move is not exclusive and that it is “likely” that the augmented reality app will see release on Android Wear devices.
The comment was made at TechCrunch Disrupt SF 2016, where Hanke had taken part in a discussion to reflect on Pokémon GO’s success and where it was being steered toward in the coming months and years.
“It’s not exclusive. Our whole mission as a company is to evangelise this whole concept of playing games outside, real-world games, [or] you call them augmented reality games,” Hanke explained. “We want lots of people to create games like that.
“Our technology is a platform that can be used to make these experiences. We’re interested in kind of moving that genre of games forward, and a part of that is moving people away from this experience of looking at the phone all the time, and enabling you to enjoy the people around you, to walk down the Embarcadero and look around and see the beautiful sights while you’re also playing the game. Apple Watch we think is a great vehicle for that, and we’re incredibly excited to be working with Apple on that.”
He added: “I think it’s a really interesting piece of hardware. The standalone functionality with the GPS, the faster processor, [being] waterproof… I like where they’re going with that. We also have the Pokémon GO Plus, which is a low-cost device that pairs with your smartphone that gives you the ability to play heads-up while you’re walking, running, or biking.
“That’s an interesting part of that strategy. As other devices come on the market, if those are Android Wear devices or devices from other quadrants that are interesting for gameplay, mobility, active, then we’ll look into supporting those too.”