Since recently launching, the Pokemon Go app has exploded onto the scene for cell phone users of all ages. Through the Android or IOS app, it uses data from mobile phones to chase Pokemon in whatever environment they’re around.
With all of that moving around one benefit is that many people who rarely get out of the house are now getting out more than ever.
Unlike most video games, Pokemon Go isn’t played only with your thumbs. To play the game effectively, users must walk, drive or jump to find the Pokemon.
“I started playing the game last weekend when we were in College Station for the state 7-on-7 tournament,” said Stephenville High School student Tyler Schouten. “A lot of us started playing and we eventually were walking all around our hotel. Now that I’m home, I’m walking all around my house and neighborhood looking for them.”
Not only has Pokemon Go encouraged users to walk around their house, but even when out and about Stephenville users are on the lookout.
“I’ll have my phone sitting on my lap while I drive and if I see one then my phone vibrates and I’ll stop to see what’s around,” said Tarleton State University student Taylor Medlin. “Before I had never gone to the park to just walk around or sprint. But yesterday that’s all I did for about an hour or so and I was surprised about how big the park was. If I’m just sitting somewhere in general and my phone goes off, I’ll run to wherever it is that I have to go to catch whatever Pokemon is there.”
The fitness tracking company Jawbone has recorded that the Cardiogram app for Apple Watch has seen a large uptick in physical activity among users since the launch of the game, indicating that Pokemon Go users are moving around more than before.
Another individual playing the game is Stephenville High School student Kyle Lindsey.
Lindsey, who is also a Stephenville football player, said the app has gotten him off the couch more than before and has definitely changed the norm of what he does when he’s not at practice or working out.
“I was at my friend's house recently and when I’m over there we typically just hang out at his house. We don’t really do too much but stay inside,” he said. “But this time when I was there we were outside walking all over the place looking for them. I’m definitely walking around more than I normally do.”
With the app attracting such a large number of users and receiving praise from most, there have been several incidents across the world that have forced law enforcement to give some tips on how to play, including in the Stephenville area.
“There are a few things that we’d like for people who are playing in the Stephenville area to remember, including to have fun and to enjoy the game,” said Stephenville Police Sgt. Sha King. “We want users to be very careful while driving and ask that they not take their attention away from the road. We also urge users to be aware of their surroundings and crossing streets. We want to prevent people from being injured. Lastly, be aware and cautious about where you look. Don’t enter others yards or property without permission.”