A new update for the Pokémon Go app has users Poké-freaked out. In it, changes have made it harder to capture Pokémon, harder on phone batteries (again), and, maybe most frustrating of all, made it so that all third-party tracking apps were rendered non-functional. That includes the very popular Pokévision app.
However, one tracking app is still up and running. In fact, Poke Radar has now launched a web app so you can save that sweet battery juice for the road. The reason they've weathered Niantic kinking the hose on other tracking apps is simple: They aren't plugged into Pokémon Go's API and they aren't violating Niantic's terms of service, according to the app's creators. Instead, their map is built out through crowd-sourced information.
It's not the perfect map. The tracking apps that were plugged into the game's API were able to offer something closer to an accurate vision of what was in the vicinity. The crowd-sourced method of Poke Radar means that sometimes the Pokémon that appear on the map are gone because the information can be a little older. But it's better than nothing, right?
In response to so many apps going down, Poke Radar has instituted some updates to fill the void. "We've updated our service to massively increase accuracy," the creators said in a post on their Facebook page Monday. "Submissions also now only show for Pokémon found in the immediate last 60 minutes to greatly improve the likelihood of catching what's shown." That update also means that there's a countdown under those Pokémon when you're looking at them on the map (see image at top of the page).
"We're working on a ton of great features including machine learning to give the most accurate locations of Pokémon in Pokémon Go without having to access Niantic's API and violate their terms of service," the creators wrote.
The addition of recency information is great, but even old information can be useful since Pokémon are frequently appearing in the same places and historical information may be a great way to discover nests (before they start to change).