In the official Support Article, Niantic has clarified their reasoning behind this change, expressing their desire to focus on building Adventure Sync further rather than supporting separate devices: “Because Adventure Sync allows Trainers the option of tracking their steps, earning Buddy Candy, and hatching Eggs in one mobile device rather than 2 separate devices, we want to focus on building Adventure Sync so that Trainers will no longer have to split their gameplay between 2 devices.”
Technically, we agree with Niantic’s direction moving forward. On one hand, Adventure Sync is a wonderful idea that was warmly greeted by the player base. On the other hand, Apple Watch is a proprietary device that is used only by a fraction of the player base.
Our gut feeling is that AS will eventually become a staple of all Niantic games – under a different name, of course. Wizards Unite doesn’t have support for it, neither does Ingress Prime, but we don’t see a reason why it wouldn’t be included, especially given that all three games share the same technical underpinnings.
Player base reactions
We ran a poll on our official Twitter account yesterday, asking players if they will miss the Apple Watch connectivity. The results were surprising, with less than half voters expressing their “sadness” with discontinued support for the Watch (if the poll hasn’t ended, you’ll have to click on the Tweet to see results):
Trainers, are you an Apple Watch user?
How do you feel about the recent announcement that Niantic is removing the Pokémon Go Watch App functionality from the game beginning July 1?
(Also, feel free to tell us how you feel in the comments below.)
— Pokémon GO Hub (@PokemonGOHubNet) May 31, 2019
Honestly, we expected more anger and pitchforks in the tweet’s comments section, but it seems that most people have found their peace with this. Pokémon GO on the Apple Watch was apparently not maintained well, but it did allow you to break the speed cap sometimes and had the convenience of letting you check egg progress without opening the game.
In case you were wondering how does the Apple Watch Pokemon GO app look like, here are a few screenshots (old screenshots):