Niantic CEO John Hanke: video games are the primordial soup for tech evolution

Niantic CEO John Hanke: video games are the primordial soup for tech evolution

Image Credit: Michael O'Donnell/GamesBeat
Niantic CEO John Hanke summoned up the ghost of Arthur C. Clarke whilst discussing augmented truth with the famous quote, “Any sufficiently advanced era is indistinguishable from magic.” but to get generation to that factor, experimentation is important — and games are the precise proving floor.

“one of the excellent things approximately video games and game enthusiasts as a way to pioneer that new technology is that game enthusiasts are inclined to position up with some glitches and a few imperfections in tech, which makes it just a fantastic place to surely push a number of these new technology forward into the frontier wherein things don’t always work precisely the way you need them to,” stated Hanke.

Hanke noted the likes of Clarke and Stephen King amongst his favorite authors, however he turned into most encouraged by way of William Gibson and Neal Stephenson and their imaginative and prescient of the way tech could end up an vital a part of society inside the destiny. on the GamesBeat Summit in Mill Valley, California, he discussed how augmented truth experiences would possibly evolve in a hearth chat with science fiction creator Eliot Peper.

Niantic’s cell recreation Pokémon move is one of the earliest examples of the electricity of AR gaming, raking in over $1.2 billion in sales and attracting greater than 752 million downloads since it went viral within the summer of 2016. Hanke says that the social gameplay is the “heart of the sport,” as its players hit the streets and hunted AR creatures together around metropolis.

“subsequent we’re searching at how do we make that even more immersive, and how will we permit extra people to have a shared experience together in a public area,” stated Hanke. “So we’re investing heavily in this concept of the AR cloud, that's to enable people to proportion a high-precision and excessive-fidelity augmented fact view collectively in public. And it kind of draws on our mapping roots, and that i’m extraordinary enthusiastic about the type of gameplay experiences that that’s going to enable in the destiny.”

It’s much like improbable chief creative officer invoice Roper’s macro tackle how computer science may want to enhance recreation design in massively multiplayer games — by fixing technical problems through moving to the cloud, new opportunities may want to open up for AR games.

Hanke says that augmented reality is a vast idea, and a whole lot of oldsters are targeted totally at the visual element of it. but inside the future, audio-primarily based and voice-primarily based AR may pop out on top and that’s some thing that is currently untapped.

“I assume there’s a false impression that this is clearly all there may be to augmented reality, it’s purely approximately the visible, and how exact are we able to make the visual, how appropriately can we check in things, how bright are we able to make the image,” said Hanke. “and that i assume the capability for AR is a lot larger than that, and there’s a hazard that it can now not even include visuals as a primary manner that we access it.”

Pokémon move driven place-based AR into the mainstream, and possibly Niantic will experiment with voice-driven AR in its upcoming Harry Potter AR recreation. precise factor most gamers already realize the best manner to pronounce “wingardium leviosa.”

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