(Source: Niantic, Fair Use)
Remember when Pokémon Go first came out and there was all that fear about how it was secretly stealing all of your data and there was nothing you could do to stop it?
Well, that was nothing. The Pokémon Go servers are down at the moment, and we’re pretty sure (read: 100% positive) that it’s because Niantic are adding more ways to spy on you.
We asked our tech guy to analyze the code (or whatever IT nerds do), and he told us that since the servers were brought down, there have been 3 more lines of code added to the game files.
Again, we’re not IT nerds so we don’t know what this means, but we asked our geek to tell it to us in English, and apparently there are three new features being added to Pokémon Go.
#1: The ability to trade. When the servers come back up, you’ll be able to trade your 1800 CP Gyarados to a level 1 beginner, effectively ruining the game and making it entirely pointless. But hey, trading, yay!
#2: The ability to battle your friends in real-time. Now this one is pretty cool, because it means there’s actually some gameplay other than the repetitive gym battles. Strategy will be key, and knowing what type beats what will make the difference between winning and losing.
#3: More data is being collected. As well as your full name, address, date of birth, hair and eye color, and height, Niantic will now have complete access to your microphone, camera, and speakers.
What does this mean? Well, for starters, it means that everything you say or do (whether you’re in the Pokémon Go app or not) will be recorded and sent to Niantic where they will then (probably) sell this information to Facebook and Google.
Once FB and Google have this info, they will know exactly what you want to buy, when you want to buy it, and where you want to buy it from. So basically, you’ll start to see all sorts of incredibly targeted ads for things that you really want to buy.
But hey… At least you can trade and battle now, right?