Are you playing Pokemon Go in Canada? The free game has not launched in Canada yet, but many have already downloaded the app by creating a U.S. iTunes Account (click here to follow our tutorial).
Pokemon Go is powered by various in-app purchases, but a new revenue stream is coming soon, according to John Hanke, the CEO of Niantic, the developer of the game that teamed up with Nintendo.
Speaking with the Financial Times, Hanke said “sponsored locations” would allow a new revenue stream, on top of existing in-app purchases.
Hanke explained “there is a second component to our business model at Niantic, which is this concept of sponsored locations”, adding, where businesses will “pay us to be locations within the virtual game board — the premise being that it is an inducement that drives foot traffic”.
These advertisers will be charged on a “cost per visit” basis, akin to the “cost per click” model used in Google’s search advertising, he noted. Niantic is a spin-off company from Google, as the former developed the augmented reality game Ingress, on which Pokemon Go is based on.
Hanke did not add anything further, only to say “There will be things that we say about that in the future”.
There’s no surprise this was coming, given Niantic’s ties to Google. But some businesses are already cleverly luring Pokemon Go players to their store, like L’inizio Pizza Bar in Long Island City, Queens, according to the NY Post:
L’inizio’s manager, Sean Benedetti, says he paid $10 to have a dozen of the Pokémon characters lured to the store. It drew in so many players, the shop’s business went up 75 percent.
“We had people come down, sit down and get a couple beers and play the Pokémon game,” Benedetti told The Post.
Now that’s pretty smart. Canadian businesses are probably eager to take advantage of new found traffic too—that is when the game finally launches in Canada (we’re guessing maybe tomorrow).