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This article was published on August 4, 2016

Estimates put Pokémon Go revenue at $160 million (and still rising)

Estimates put Pokémon Go revenue at $160 million (and still rising)
Bryan Clark
Story by

Bryan Clark

Former Managing Editor, TNW

Bryan is a freelance journalist. Bryan is a freelance journalist.

After the initial frenzy of activity, Pokémon Go stories have been all over the place lately. Some suggest you should remove the app completely, others loudly proclaim the hype train has left the station and still others are upset about the loss of popular helpers to assist you in catching ’em all; but no matter what you’re led to believe, these initial estimates by app analytics and marketing platform Sensor Tower tell an entirely different story.


Let’s start with revenue. Remember, these are merely predictions as no one but Niantic could possibly know exactly how much Pokémon Go made.


In the (nearly) 30 days since the app’s release, Sensor Tower estimates over $160 million in revenue from in-app sales. Let that sink in for a second, the app still isn’t available in most of the world and that number is only going to continue to crime as countries like Brazil and China. Plus, Pokémon’s home country, Japan, was mostly a flop as the country had an overall negative view of the app and rated it accordingly.


In Japan, Pokémon Go saw a huge influx of one and two star reviews accounting for 82 percent negative sentiment and nearly 75 percent of its ratings being of the one star variety. Negative sentiment at that level doesn’t usually give us much to talk about as the app would largely be considered a flop.

Not Pokémon Go though. Negative sentiment be damned.

None of it could stop the behemoth from chugging along and racking up millions in revenue with each passing day.

Changes and bugs

There have been several infuriating changes to the game and some even more head-scratching bugs in the weeks since the game’s release. Of all the changes, none were more infuriating than the most recent update, which changed Pokémon after they were caught. This led to some rather rare beasts being changed into pretty common characters — and really pissed off Niantic’s userbase.

But still, according to estimates, the changes weren’t enough to keep people from playing.


Also interesting is this: Even after the changes, the frustration, the negative sentiment and a slight drop in average daily use — Pokémon trainers are still spending more time on the app each day than the average social media user spends on Facebook. After (less than) a month.

Let that sink in for a minute.

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