A Controversial, Subtle Update to Pokémon GO

With the latest release of multiple updates to Pokémon GO, players seemed to be holding Niantic in more of a positive light. With the introduction of the buddy system, the updated gym training feature, and making use of the in-game medals, it seemed Niantic was finally beginning to head in a great direction. However, with all of the positive news, there was bound to be something controversial!

The latest Pokémon GO patch has made the game virtually unplayable when traveling above “driving speed,” which has been estimated at about 25 MPH. When traveling at this speed, no Pokémon will spawn, and your nearby list will go completely blank. Basically, the game loses most of its function when the player is not walking.

If this is not a bug, it is likely Niantic’s effort to curb accidents caused by playing Pokémon GO while driving. Unfortunately, this update has put an end to one way that many players enjoyed the game. Numerous players enjoyed catching Pokémon while riding a train or carpooling to work. With this update, that is no longer possible.

Do you play while carpooling or on a bus? Don’t fret, there may be hope. Some have speculated that Niantic may have spotted complaints, and removed the speed cap. Others wonder if the effect was a bug, as it was never mentioned in the latest patch notes.

Today Online

Photo Credit: Today Online

There are contradicting reports on Reddit, with some saying they are still seeing Pokémon while traveling at driving speed, suggesting it was a bug. Others report a dead zone of Pokémon while going above 25 MPH. Nothing spawning, and nothing on the nearby list.

Whether this update was intentional or a bug is yet to be determined. I would lean more towards an intentional feature to further encourage people to put their phones down while driving and pay attention to the road.

Have you experienced this new change while traveling above 25 MPH? Do you think it is intentional or a bug? Do you think it makes players more safe?

Like this story? Check out some of our other Pokémon GO articles!