What should you know about Pokemon?
If your children are Pokémon enthusiasts, you’re probably familiar with the phrase “Gotta catch ’em all.” That phrase has never been more true than with the release of a replacement portable diversion app that is taking the world by storm:
Pokémon Go has been all over the news, but in case you haven’t heard, it’s an augmented reality game supported by the franchise’s show, video games, and card games. The object of the activity is to go outside and find as many Pokémon (“pocket monsters”) as possible (there are quite 150). The app employs GPS tracking, so you’re ready to visit real-world venues such as parks, schools, and shopping malls to catch Pokémon. Because the GPS simulates real-world places in real-time, the app displays icons on a map that indicates where the Pokémon is, where you’ll gather supplies, or where you’ll visit “training” gyms.
The more you travel, the more “energy” you will have, and thus the larger your collection will grow. Players may also see where other players are on the map, and after they reach a certain level, they will join teams and compete against other trainers (players).
Isn’t it exciting? That’s exactly what it is! Users adore it, and it has received excellent feedback. However, it deals with augmented reality and real-time play, which should raise eyebrows. This is what you want to comprehend.
Is there anything to be concerned about?
The primary safety risk is that a player’s location is frequently tracked, saved, and revealed to adjacent players—both youngsters and adults. According to sense Media, Pokémon Go fans who join the game using their Google account risk having their information compromised. Other risks include physical injury as a result of distraction (such as walking through an intersection while looking at your phone), being guided to a dangerous place or personal property, and becoming a target for attack or robbery.
Unfortunately, there have been accounts of similar incidents. The game also quickly drains a device’s battery, which may be troubling if it’s the only way to contact your child when they’re away from home.
How will you ensure that your child plays safely?
“If your child wants to play Pokémon Go, have a chat about safety concerns,” advises sense Media app editor Christine Elgersma. For example, she suggests asking him about the dangers of using his gadget while preoccupied.
Consider playing with your family. This may indicate that your child is using your phone as you go around looking for Pokémon, or that you’re both on your own devices but playing together. When playing on different devices, there is some friendly competition because only one person can catch the Pokémon when a group of people encounters one.
But what if your older child isn’t interested in playing Pokémon with your mother? Your child is leaving with a group of trusted buddies. Before they leave, ask them about safety and check-in.
Because of the nature of the sport, your child may come into contact with other participants. Finally, have a discussion regarding personal property vs property, as the game may lead your child to the former. This could be an occasion where the saying “Gotta capture ’em all” does not apply.
Elgersma adds a few more technical pointers to remember:
Keep the app up to current at all times. Privacy concerns, such as those impacting Google account holders, are now being addressed.
When not participating in the sport, turn off location tracking.
Create a family email address solely for gaming purposes. When signing up, you’ll use your real name (ideally yours, not your child’s), but make sure the screen name for the sport doesn’t reveal any personal information.
What are the game’s advantages?
The software urges users to get outside and move around. Yes, your child will still use his or her device, but they will do so in the great outdoors rather than slumped on the couch. Kids get to discover different parks and walk a lot. And just because it’s a computer game doesn’t mean there isn’t any social interaction—frequently it’s a wonderful way for your child to meet new people his age or spend quality time with his parents.