It appears that Pokemon Go developer Niantic has its sights set on India. According to a job listing spotted on Linkedin, the company is looking to hire local talent to “engage local Pokemon Go communities” with responsibilities including event planning, content creation, and business development to name a few. Niantic is hiring in Mumbai and Hyderabad for these roles.
Pokemon Go released the world over on July 6, 2016 while avid fans in India were able to play the game by sideloading the APK on Android or creating an App Store account for another region it was available in like the US for iOS, it officially graced India on December 14 of the same year partnering with telco giant Reliance Jio at launch.
It will be interesting to see what Niantic has in mind for its India presence. The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has made it tough for AR-focussed games to survive. Recently, Microsoft-owned Mojang shut down Minecraft Earth due to this reason, though recent Pokemon Go updates have made it easier to play without having to step outside.
And while Pokemon Go was ridiculously popular in India at launch, it doesn’t have the same fervour attached to it like other major mobile games have in India like Free Fire or Ludo King. Nonetheless, how it tackles the India market and its challenges will be worth watching.
Previously, mobile analytics firm Sensor Tower claimed Pokemon Go generated $1 billion in revenue in 2020 with a lifetime revenue of $4 billion.
Recent attempts from international gaming companies trying to set up shop in India have been met with mixed results. Garena with Free Fire has proved that India doesn’t just play PUBG Mobile while Riot Games’ India adventure crashed and burned with the firm adopting a hands off approach to the nation, preferring to let tournament organisers and esports companies do the heavy lifting.
We’ve reached out to Niantic for comment and will update this story if we hear from the company.