Niantic Labs had an early Christmas present for its "Pokémon Go" trainers. An update that will be coming to the iOS version later in the week will enhance the augmented reality experience. Niantic is utilizing Apple's ARKit framework in order to offer advanced AR features.

How will this work? Niantic is going to use this update to make sure that the fantastic beasts of "Pokémon Go" are more intelligently placed on screen in whichever setting the trainer finds himself or herself in. It will also appear as though the Pokémon are more life-like, as they will use the update to create true-to-size screen features.

This will mean that if you catch a Snorlax, the Snorlax will appear as the true gigantic monster that it is, and an Eevee will show up as the size of a dog, roughly.

One of the most exciting aspects of the new AR update, however, is the way that it will change catch bonuses. The new bonus will be called "expert handler" and will allow a trainer to "sneak up" on a creature without scaring it, which will allow the trainer to catch the beast more easily. If a trainer accomplishes this feat, they will receive bonus stardust and XP, which is vital as trainers move up in the ranks and have more powerful Pokémon.

How this update will change the game

Here is how it will work. According to The Verge, a player will find out that a creature is nearby, and they can tap that Pokemon on the map.

Once they do so, several patches of grass will pop up on their screen, similar to the way that the original Pokémon game was designed. From here, the trainer will have to tap on the patches of grass in order to make the Pokemon appear. Once the Pokemon appears, it will stay in the same place, however, using the AR mode, the trainer can move around the Pokemon.

There will be a detection meter that lets you know that you are moving too rapidly and are about to frighten the monster. If you are successful in sneaking up on the monster, you will receive the catch bonus.

This new feature could change the way that "Pokémon Go" is played. Most of the time, trainers will choose not to use the AR mode, because it has proven to be more difficult to catch Pokemon and it tends to drain the battery of the device being used.

With these new incentives in place, we may see a rise in the amount of trainers using the mode.


Overall, the updates that are coming to "Pokémon Go" -- along with the recent release of dozens of Pokemon -- makes for happy trainers all over the world. Niantic has proven that they are able to continue to bring players back to their game again and again, as the thrill of catching Pocket Monsters remains.