Pokemon Go iPhone
People play "Pokemon GO" on the Pokequan GoBoat Adventure Cruise in the Occoquan River in the small town of Occoquan, Virginia, U.S. August 14, 2016. Reuters/Sait Serkan Gurbuz

Non-stop connectivity, free of any disruption or technical glitch like a dying signal, is the unacknowledged but obvious unsung hero to any gaming experience. Taking advantage of the moment and never losing it is the foundation on which the insanely popular augmented reality game Pokémon Go is based. The game is addictive because it transfers the experience out of the gaming console into real life. What’s more important is that players only need their smartphone and that ever-present Internet connection to do it; there’s no need to invest in the unwieldy headgear of a virtual reality set.

Everyone on the planet who has joined or observed the craze know the drill by now: The Pokémon character pops up on the app transposed on the real-life location where they are currently located. The impetus is to catch them all — and that means literally running from one physical location to another. A map in the app barely helps players navigate and track the virtual creatures down.

The level of devotion that the game has inspired among fans is unprecedented. According to a Forbes poll, at least 25 million Americans play it daily, and 69 percent of them actually go Pokémon-hunting during office hours. Android Headlines says that since its launch last July, the game has been earning US$10 million (AU$13 million) every single day on both Google App and Apple Play stores.

Aside from ensuring that players are always online to spot the creature, it also keeps them updated on the various apps that can increase chances of winning. Amazon Web Services and other third-party apps offer users other online sleight-of-hand tricks to track Pokémons. Some of these apps give alerts when a Pikachu or a Bulbasaur is nearby, and while the element of surprise is nullified, players can at least prepare for the chase and capture. According to CNET, an outcry was recently unleashed when Niantic, the creator and manufacturer of Pokémon Go, resorted to strong-arm tactics and clamped down on these third-party providers.

The game has also drawn criticism and concerns from employers, as well as hospitals and public officials, because it is becoming disruptive to productivity and even public safety. However, this hasn’t stopped the community of fans and gamers to form offline social gatherings. According to Forbes, Pokémon Go players cross the divide of generations and come together to bond, share tips and “war stories,” and just have a good time.

Some of these meet-ups have been called “rave parties,” probably due to the eclectic mix chosen by the attendees who range from their teens to their middle 40s. Assemblies like these cannot be successful unless the Internet connection in the area is strong; without it, the attendees would find it tough to show each other tracking apps and other online tools related to the game.

There are other tools needed to maximise the experience of the game — this time, it’s of the structural kind. Although it’s hard to predict when a Pokémon will make its next appearance, tracking app notwithstanding, players can plan ahead to make sure they don’t lose your Internet connection.

There are apps that can help them search for areas with strong Wi-Fi hubs that they can lock into. It would make sense then to pass by these places instead of the ones that are dead zones.

Battery is just as important in the game as well. Players are advised to conserve battery by closing unnecessary apps or even dimming their screen. Investing in a power bank is probably a smart decision. State-of-the-art Internet-boosting devices like Internet network extenders, which are portable plug-and-play devices that can boost weak signal to a full five-bar power level, is also recommended.

State-of-the-art Internet-boosting devices like the network extenders of 5BARz International , which are portable plug-and-play devices that can boost weak signals to a full five-bar power level, are also recommended.