Pokemon Go developer Niantic Labs hav been criticized of the recent updates that removed the 3-Step tracking feature from the app. It also removed support for third-party tracking services.
Niantic made an official post on the Pokemon GO Facebook page stating the 3-Step display to indicate how close certain Pokemon are, had to be removed “in order to improve the underlying design.”
“The original feature, although enjoyed by many, was also confusing and did not meet our underlying product goals. We will keep you posted as we strive to improve this feature.”
In addition to the 3-Step tracking update Niantic also restricted access to the Pokemon GO API. In doing so this also meant third-party services like PokeVision used to track Pokemon in real-time no longer worked. Needless to say it was not popular among players.
“We have limited access by third-party services which were interfering with our ability to maintain quality of service for our users and to bring Pokémon Go to users around the world,” Niantic said.
The company has been “working crazy hours to keep the game running as we continue to launch globally.” This means making updates that compounds issues with the game is not helping.
“The large number of users has made the roll-out of Pokémon Go around the world an… interesting… challenge. And we aren’t done yet! Yes, Brazil, we want to bring the game to you (and many other countries where it is not yet available).”
They added: “If you haven’t heard us Tweeting much it’s because we’ve been heads down working on the game. But we’ll do our best going forward to keep you posted on what’s going on.”
My biggest argument about Niantic launching globally so quickly is that the initial app they launched in the U.S. doesn’t have all the bugs worked out yet to make it an optimal product. You shouldn’t be launching worldwide until you fix the very basic issues with the game. Once they have those things fixed, they can have a more successful global launch. In the meantime you will just be frustrated more users who may ultimately stop playing.
Even though Niantic’s efforts to crackdown on third-party Pokemon tracking services that hasn’t stopped people from finding alternative sources to catch’em all! A new tracking service called SmartPoke 2 shows Pokemon overlaid on a map, how far away they are from you.