Love it or hate it, there’s no escaping the impact of Pokemon Go. In the last few weeks, Nintendo gained almost $30 billion in market value, before seeing its stock tumble just as quickly. Thousands of Australians joined a Pokemon walk to catch the little critters as a community. The game has even caused a surge in battery pack sales, with some retailers seeing an increase of 200%. So what has been the impact at UNSW?
Well, it’s more than just getting stuck behind a player caught up in the game.
In just the last three days, there have been almost 260,000 connections made to the Pokemon servers over UniWide. Greg Sawyer, Director of Security and Infrastructure at UNSW Australia is not worried, as the traffic caused by the app is minimal. “UniWide is more than capable of handling the traffic from Pokemon Go.”
After looking over the wireless data, one statistic stands out. One student is responsible for over 20% of the Pokemon Go data we’re seeing. Is the Australia’s most dedicated player, or someone gaming the system?
And while Nintendo’s stock price has taken a hit in recent days, Pokemon Go traffic remains steady on UniWide.
But it’s not all fun and games. Researchers at the NHMRC Centre for Research Excellence for Mental Health and Substance Use are researching the impact of Pokemon Go on users with anxiety and depression.
Dr Louise Thornton explains “We were naturally really intrigued by all the articles about PokemonGo users reporting improvements in their mental health. It was actually a research assistant within the Centre, Brad Shaw, who came up with the idea that we should look into PokemonGo”