Pokémon GO: Niantic denies April revenue being 'lowest since 2018' amid controversy
Pokémon GO's revenue has reportedly been going on a downward trend since February.
Pokémon GO has been in a rough patch for quite a while now, especially after they made a controversial move to nerf Remote Raids and increase Remote Raid passes.
This caused player outrage, with many quitting and boycotting the game, up to the point where some even made death threats against Pokémon GO community managers.
So for most, it was no surprise that a report by Mobilegamer.biz claimed that Pokémon GO’s revenue in April, amounting to US$34.7 million, was its lowest since February 2018.
Previous reports have also shown that Pokémon GO's revenue has gone on a downward trend for the past three months, as the game made US$58 million in February 2023 but only US$42.8 million in March.
Niantic denied the reports after being contacted by Eurogamer, who published the dev company’s response.
Niantic stated that the estimate was incorrect and that revenue in 2023 was up from the same period in 2022.
A spokesperson stated, "We generally don't comment on third-party estimates of our revenue as they are often incorrect, which is the case here." According to them, revenue in 2023 "is up on the last year".
This statement, however, did not refute the claim that April's app store revenue was decreasing month-on-month.
And while a decrease in revenue was reported in April 2023, the Pokémon GO dev company seems to be unfazed.
"We don't focus on month-to-month trends because they fluctuate based on major live events," Niantic continued.
They also said that “in-person Raid participation has increased”.
However, a report on 30 April from Pokébattler, a popular Pokémon GO battle simulator site, hinted differently.
As requested here are the Pokebattler website and app analytics. I will let you all discuss what it means. I’m too upset to put into words.
Watching the app you’ve been excited to build finally take off and then crash hard is devastating. pic.twitter.com/A0rYNMkdxk
— Pokebattler (@Pokebattler_com) April 30, 2023
Reports show that from 6 to 28 April, user traffic for the website and app went down by 54.75 per cent, showing that fewer people have the need to use the simulator and are, thus, not participating in raids.
Before the Raid Pass changes in March, the site averaged around 200,000 visitors a month, spiking to nearly 800,000 during big raid events.
That said, Niantic also remains confident of their stance, based on previous interviews given. According to them, they think that the game’s income will remain relatively stable.
Ed Wu, one of Pokémon GO’s veteran devs, told Eurogamer that all these would “not going to create a short-term revenue impact for [the game]".
One has to note that the money made via in-game purchases is only part of the game’s overall earnings. Brand and commercial sponsorships, the sale of live event tickets through Niantic's online shop, and others are also included in the overall revenue.
Niantic has also been reportedly sending emails to select players with a “mysterious gift” to entice them to return to the game.
Redditor RebelSpeed shared a screenshot of a promo code and an email from the Pokémon devs, saying "We miss you Trainer!"
This was met with RebelSpeed posting the screenshot on Reddit with a caption that said, “Not buying my attention Niantic, try harder.”
It was not only the original poster who got the email. Others, like Grilons91, got the same email, but said they “don't plan on coming back until something substantially changes” and that “a few pity Pokéballs won’t change that”.
“The only email that will get me back is one that says they reverted the Remote Raid Pass changes,” Redditor LankyEmergency7992 said in response to the post.
Anna is a freelance writer and photographer. She is a gamer who loves RPGs and platformers, and is a League of Legends geek. She's also a food enthusiast who loves a good cup of black coffee.
For more gaming news updates, visit https://yhoo.it/YahooGamingSEA. Also follow us on Twitter, as well as our Gaming channel on YouTube, and check out Yahoo Esports Southeast Asia’s Facebook page!