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Where would Pokémon Go be without the Age of Data Disruption?

September 7, 2016 No Comments

Ben Rund, Senior Director of Product Marketing at Informatica

While the Pokémon Go craze may have peaked, the mobile game is still extremely popular. Whether you use it or now or not, you should know about it. No other example today better shows how the digital world is changing lives and opening new opportunities for data-powered business.

The stock of Nintendo jumped the most since it began trading in Tokyo in 1983, as its new Pokémon Go game tops smartphone app rankings according to Bloomberg. Over the course of the last half year (January-July 2016), the stock value grew by about 50%.

pokemon Where would Pokémon Go be without the Age of Data Disruption?

Why? Pokémon Go has an estimated 30 million active users. While that may be a decline from the 45 million daily users it had in July, it is still going strong. The history of Pokémon started in 1996, a time when many felt it was just for kids. Now, from a completely new perspective, I definitely say this is worth having a look at – and is not just for kids.

Pokémon Go is a proof point of the era we live in where information is the asset and a major factor for new business models. Combined that with the Internet of Things (IoT) that is changing the world in a fast pace. By 2020, research says there will be more connected devices than people on our planet.

Where data powers business around Pokémon Go

There are several areas where the possibilities for using data are extremely interesting.

- Geo location – With 30 million active users, that’s still a lot of gamers snapping pictures and travelling to various destinations, especially for rare finds. Eventually, you’ll likely be able to locate other players to trade, battle and more (something the makers have been promising). With the descriptions of each stop, there is complexity in aligning the picture/object with the name and data accuracy is important when generating these descriptions. Some developers have a component in choosing a faction, so there is the additional level of instigating social interaction between players. Location-based advertising and sponsored locations will be next steps for enterprises to leverage this for targeting or maybe even for dating? In order to leverage this for business, a granular understanding of the user profile and information about the locations is needed. This is relationship knowledge.

- Commerce opportunity – In-app or in-game commerce is not new, but Pokemon Go might take the next step with it. The target group for this app is decently broad, but I believe the sweet spot is high schoolers.  Imagine if you wanted this group to both know where your smoothie establishment was and even worked in the angle of getting something special for checking in/purchasing. Mining this target segment and opportunity will happen. Based on the 360-degree view of the gamer (customer), app-specific formats of product information are required to turn this into an in-app conversion.

- Data Tagging – As mentioned above, data accuracy is important when generating descriptions of each stop given the complexity involved in aligning the picture/object with the name.

In summary, there is a high volume, velocity and variety of data (obvious Big Data) and a lot of knowledge about relationships. Where is the user? Who is the user? What is the demand of the user? This is a well-known use case for Master Data Management. How secure is the user information? Even millennials are sensitive about their data privacy and security. This business opportunity brings the need for big data integration, big data governance and big data security.

Is there downside?

Admonishers in every country report about the risks. Increase of accidents in traffic? People getting injured? Decrease of work efficiency? An employer in Brooklyn warned its staff about spending too much time with it. This infographic from Welt 24, shows that users of these apps spend the most time with Pokémon Go. It even tops messaging and social media.

Minutes per day spend with app.

Users are still spending, on average, around 26 minutes per day in the app in the U.S., which is actually a slight increase compared to the average play duration the week prior to the update’s arrival.Users are still opening the app about the same amount of time, too — around six times per day, for the most part.

While the data could be used positively, it has also been immediately criticized in that someone has already used the data for crime (gathering players and robbing them), or bad data mining in mis-tagging someone’s home as a public stop.

What do you think about the risks and business potential with data?
Happy to discuss on twitter @benrund



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