Only a few days ago, we reported that Niantic’s CEO John Hanke isn’t really fond of Pokemon tracker apps for Pokemon Go. He went on record to say that the company might shut them down in the near future.
“People are only hurting themselves because it takes some fun out of the game,” he said. “People are hacking around trying to take data out of our system and that’s against our terms of service.”
That future has now arrived as the most popular tracking app, Pokevision, as well as several others have stopped working. This happened Saturday night and Forbes got in touch with one of the founders of Pokevision, Yangcheng Liu, who confirmed the site was intentionally taken down and might remain that way ‘indefinitely’. Liu refused to disclose whether Niantic or The Pokemon Company had sent them a legal notice.
Pokemon Go is a game where the players are required to travel across the real world in order to find Pokemon. Many people found these apps to be useful since it made the job of ‘catching them all’ easier, however Niantic’s terms of service did not allow this and the company itself feels that it takes the fun out of the game.
However, Niantic currently has no functional Pokemon tracking feature within the game after it decided to remove the location tracker system aka “the three step bug” entirely in an update it released yesterday. This prompted the emergence of these sites and they gained popularity quickly. Pokevision had 27 million people visit its website in only 5 days.
The decision to remove the system from the game wasn’t received well by the community, with many criticizing the company for doing so. To make matters worse, it also decided to block access to its server to third-party tracking apps that led to the demise of most of the websites.
There is some good news for you trainers out there who still want to gain an unfair advantage. Even though Niantic shut down access to their servers, there are some apps that use artificial intelligence and crowdsourcing to help you find rare Pokemon, Pokestops, and Gyms. Pokemon Go Maps is probably the best one out right now, developed by a former google engineer. Since Pokemon Go Maps is built without using any third party APIs it does not violate any Pokemon Go Terms of Service, and won’t jeopardize your account. Here’s where you can get it: