Pokémon Go Makes the Case for Free Data

Get up, get out your seat, get outside and get your very on Chizardon! Making a new case for free data, Pokémon Go has taken the nation by storm, and as kids and adults alike rush outside to play the game that not only encourages outdoor activity, but also led to the resurgence of one of Ninetendo’s most popular brands, one thing is clear: Pokémon Go requires a lot of data.

According to a letter written by Congressional Democrats from the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce, as the biggest mobile game in U.S. history – with 7.5 million downloads in its first week out – users typically use “between 10 and 20 megabytes of data per hour of play.” On average, people are users spend 43 minutes a day on Pokémon Go. Further, “a serious user playing for three or more hours a day could use two gigabytes of data per month.”

To account for increasing consumer demand, and mindful of the high data use associated with the app that encourages people to leave traditional wifi-zones in their homes to go out an explore their broader environment, some companies are coming up with innovative offerings that help people stay within their data limits. On T-Mobile Tuesdays (which started July 19), the company gifted users with free, unlimited data for Pokémon Go. As long as new and existing customers download the T-Mobile Tuesday app by August 9, they can receive free Pokémon Go data allotments through the end of August 2017. At the same time that T-Mobile is boosting free data for mobile gaming, Comcast and AT&T have both announced plans to raise mobile data caps to 1TB (i.e. a heck of a lot of data) by August 21.

With Pokémon Go setting dramatic new precedent for how we’ll likely use data in the future, we can expect companies to continue to come up with innovative offers and pricing mechanisms to help us better manage data usage and keep costs down.

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