It's been less than 24 hours since the latest Pokemon GO update started rolling out worldwide, but a determined group of Pokemon fans over at The Silph Road already made a teardown of the said APK file. As it turns out, there's a chance that the Christmas-styled Pikachu and Raichu won't be the only additions to the game designed to celebrate this holiday season. Namely, the APK version 0.51.0 also added some assets implying that Niantic is preparing for another in-game event. Data miners uncovered seven new assets added to the game yesterday, six of which are images of holiday-themed gift box graphics. While the said assets aren't referenced by the game's code much, The Silph Road managed to uncover that their filenames are categorized in Bronze, Silver, and Gold tiers. Furthermore, each one of these tiers also features Special, Great, and Ultra variants of filenames.
The last uncovered asset is a new variant of the in-game Shop button which also got a holiday redesign. Data miners responsible for this discovery speculate how this doesn't imply Niantic will add another in-game shop to Pokemon GO, but will simply replace the old Shop icon with the new one during the upcoming event. Unfortunately, the said Shop icon isn't referenced by the code present in the 0.51.0 version of the Pokemon GO APK file. However, The Silph Road managed to identify a new metadata attribute called "HasHolidayItems." The said attribute is apparently related to the in-game shop, which suggests Pokemon GO may have some new offerings for us in the coming days. You can see all of the mentioned assets in the gallery below.
Now, given the almost complete lack of references to these assets and attributes in the game's code, a possible Pokemon GO holiday event would require another client-side update, and a mandatory one, at that. Seeing how Niantic is unlikely to launch a Christmas event after Christmas, it's reasonable to presume that we'll know more about these mysterious assets by the end of the week. In other words, if the San Francisco-based studio is planning a special Christmas event, another Pokemon GO update is bound to hit the Google Play Store in the next three days.