While it isn't news to us that Pokémon GO has been an absolute rage in many countries, the fact that people are willing to sacrifice their professions to catch new Pokémon is. The new mobile game has caught on to people's love for the cartoon franchise in such a way that Tom Currie, hailing from Auckland in New Zealand, quit his job at a café to find Pokémon characters by travelling across the country. So far, Currie has walked over 50 kilometers and despite having reached level 20, his enthusiasm to discover Mewtwo, considered a prize catch, hasn't waned a bit.
In his quest to find new characters and build his own team to defend gyms to the last breath, Currie has traveled across towns like Nelson, Westport, Blenheim, and Kaikoura and has plans to travel to a lot of other places as well. When he arrived in Christchurch, he said he came across players who had achieved a lot more than he had and dreams of catching Pokémon number 150 which should make him one of the best players at least in his country. Overall, he has caught 700 Pokémon which include a 1709 ‘CP’ Vaporeon which is probably much harder to find. Given how Pokémon GO incentivizes players by rewarding them with new Pokémon based on the distances they travel, the app should probably be the most effective fitness guide and tracker in the planet by now. The app went live on the Google Play Store on July 6th only for users in the United States, Australia and New Zealand, but given that Android phone users can download the app simply by changing their location, its download numbers have skyrocketed over the last few days.
The popularity of Pokémon GO can be measured by the fact that the app has been installed in Android devices in the United States in greater numbers than Tinder ever achieved. The app's average usage time, at 43 minutes and 23 seconds a day, is also higher than WhatsApp and Snapchat which can be termed as a rare feat. While there are many users like Currie who wouldn't mind walking across the country to find every single Pokémon, for those who love the game but cannot really walk as much, a large number of people have volunteered to drive such Pokémon players to Pokémon hot spots for a fee, raging from $15 an hour in New York to as much as $30 an hour in Vancouver. While this makes it much more convenient for users to play the game and chase elusive Pokémon, it is also set to potentially make the game the most popular ever in the coming days, having already reached that point here in the U.S.