As Pokemon Go continues to grow and expand, Niantic Labs and Nintendo are continuing to pump a lot of effort into helping the free app become a lot more than just a passing fad. Their latest endeavor involves sponsored partnerships, one of which could include a popular fast food chain.
Gamespot is reporting that Niantic Labs' CEO John Hanke has loosely discussed the future of Pokemon Go, explaining that Niantic and Nintendo are establishing relationships with certain businesses and franchises in order to grow the Pokemon Go brand by having sponsored PokeStops and gyms.
According to Hanke, he explained to the New York Times that they would be announcing those partnerships in the future.
Some gamers couldn't wait for that announcement, though.
Gizmodo is reporting that enterprising gamers have been sifting through the code and reading some of the hex data from Pokemon Go based on data dumps. It's been spreading wildly across social media that locked within the Pokemon Go code were strings for McDonald's as well as logos for the fast food chain tucked away inside the game's data asset folder where textures and images are stored.
They don't say in the article if the data dump occurred following a recent update or if it was based on a version that just released. The reason for that is if there was an update with the data stored in the code then it's something that was only considered and established recently. If, however, the data dump is from the first iteration release of the app, then it means that Nintendo and Niantic Labs had plans on establishing sponsored hotspots from the get go and they just had to work out the deals and the infrastructure first before officially announcing it.
While it is just a rumor that McDonald's will be the first major sponsored PokeStop for use with Pokemon Go, Nintendo is no stranger to making deals with McDonald's. One of the more recent and popular collaborations included Mario Kart 8 toys included in Happy Meals. It wouldn't be surprising to see McDonald's come out as the first major sponsored PokeStop within Pokemon Go.
The data miners weren't done dumping massive amounts of info on the game, though. They also revealed that there are a few other interesting tidbits on the horizon for Niantic Labs' Pokemon Go, including trading -- something that the developers announced was on the horizon in a future update -- and all new items. The data miners scrounged up details on legendary Pokemon that are located within Pokemon Go, as well as four new types of berries and incense, along with some new items such as "Sweet Honey". They discovered a few other interesting things as well in dumping the data, such as new nature types.
Even without sponsored hotspots, Pokemon Go's popularity is soaring and creating quite the interest at shops and stores across the nation, including getting a bunch of people to pile into a pizzeria in order to find and capture some Pokemon. The shop owner used an incense to lure in a bunch of Pokemon to help boost the appeal of the shop.
Soon we'll see what these sponsored PokeStops will bring to the table and if kids and adults alike will be flocking there to catch 'em all.