How can I get Pokemon GO on my iPhone in the UK? What is Pokemon GO? How do I play Pokemon GO?
We've produced a digital magazine called The Complete Guide to Pokémon Go - it's available to download here.
Pokemon has always been hugely popular, from the original games and TV show back in the 90s to the ultra-modern Pokemon Sun and Moon due out later this year for the Nintendo 3DS. However, it’s Pokemon GO which is causing the most hype at the moment, allowing users to explore the real world and capture Pokemon themselves, a dream for many budding Pokemon trainers. Though it’s not officially out in every country yet, here we show you how to get Pokemon GO on iPhone right now. Looking for Pokemon Go for Android? Click here.
You might also like: Best subscription boxes for nerds | Top free iPhone and iPad games | Best ever iPad and iPhone games |Best new iPad & iPhone games coming in 2016 | Best free web browser games for Mac
Updated 20 October with general updates and 8 September to include the announcement of Pokemon GO for Apple Watch
Pokemon GO guide: What is Pokemon GO?
Before we go full steam ahead and explain how to get Pokemon GO on iPhone, we’d better explain a little bit about the app itself. Pokemon GO is a game that requires players to head out into the physical world to catch Pokemon and, obviously, be the very best like no one ever was.
The game uses your smartphone GPS to pinpoint your location, encouraging users to explore more than they usually would. Niantic, the creators of the game, are pretty smart too, placing grass Pokemon near parks and open land, water Pokemon near rivers and beaches, etc.
Pokemon GO uses landmarks, shops and more as ‘Pokestops’ which provide players with random supplies, from much-needed Pokeballs to eggs that need to be incubated. Big landmarks like train stations, police stations and tourist attractions act as Pokemon Gyms, but players must be level 5 before heading into one of the gyms.
You can listen to us discuss Pokemon GO in the UK Tech Weekly podcast below!
When you do eventually spot a Pokemon you want to catch, you can change to Augmented Reality (AR) mode which uses your smartphone camera to view the Pokemon standing in front of you, in your physical environment. It’s a pretty cool feature, although you do look like you’re trying to take photos of strangers when really, you’re trying to catch a Zubat. Read next: Best wireless headphones for iPhone, iPad and Mac.
Pokemon GO guide: How to get Pokemon GO on iPhone
iOS users can download Pokemon GO from the App Store, while Android fans can access the game via Google Play. It should be noted that the game is updated periodically, to check the latest updates, head over to Niantic's website.
Image credits: Wikipedia
The game is out in different countries around the globe, the image above shows the global rollout of the app as of October 2016. We're sure with time the app will appear in more countries around the world. Credits to CNET for updating their list periodically with supported countries.
If it’s not out in your country yet, you can still get your hands on Pokemon GO. Although it’s not as straight forward as simply searching for the app on the iOS App Store, it won’t take more than five minutes to download.
How? You simply need to use an Apple ID registered to one of the countries which already support the app. We show you how to do that below:
1) Log out of your current Apple ID on your iPhone. This can be done in one of two ways – simply open the App Store, head to the Featured tab, scroll to the bottom of the page, tap your Apple ID and tap ‘Sign out’, or head to Settings > Apple ID and sign out there.
2) Once you’ve logged out of your existing Apple ID account, open the Settings app and go to General > Language & Region. Once on the menu, simply change the Region to one of the countries listed above and close the app.
3) Now head back to the App Store and search for Pokemon GO – it should appear, but don’t worry if it doesn’t. Simply try to download any free app (this is very important) and select ‘Create new Apple ID’ when prompted to log in.
4) Follow the setup instructions, making sure to select ‘None’ in the Billing menu (this only appears if you’ve tried to buy a free app and are creating a new account, not adding details to an existing one) and adding a random approved-country address.
5) Once you’ve set up your new Apple ID, head back to the App Store, search for Pokemon GO and download it.
You’re set! You can now log out of your new Apple ID and log in with your normal one. Once Pokemon GO is officially released in your country, simply delete the app from your iPhone and re-download it via your normal Apple ID – don’t worry, if you sign in to Pokemon GO your data will be backed up and synced with one of the relevant logins (such as Google).
Apple's September event was full of surprises, from the announcement of Super Mario Run to, of course, the grand reveal of the iPhone 7, but one surprise no one was ready for was Niantic Labs CEO John Hanke taking to the stage to talk about Pokemon GO. While many assumed this was just an update from the company regarding the success of the app, Hanke actually announced that Pokemon GO is coming to the Apple Watch (and Apple Watch 2).
The Pokemon GO app for Apple Watch will allow the app to track your movement without having the app open on your iPhone. When you come close to a Pokestop you'll be notified and you can activate the stop by swiping on your Apple Watch, no need to reach for your iPhone. It's a similar story with eggs too, and the app also comes with an egg tracker complication for the Apple Watch, allowing you to track progress without even opening the Watch app.
The Pokemon GO for Apple Watch app will also show you nearby Pokemon, although it won't let you catch them via the Watch. For that, you'll have to get your phone out and catch them the old-fashioned way.
The Watch app seems to offer similarities to the Pokemon GO Plus band which is in incredibly high demand at the moment, and we can't help but wonder why Niantic Labs has announced this when it makes their own accessory redundant for those with an Apple Watch. Either way, Pokemon GO for Apple Watch should be out before the end of 2016, and we'll update this section once we have more information.
Pokemon GO guide: Top Pokemon GO tips and tricks
The world of Pokemon GO can be tough, but we've been playing it for a while now and here are our top tips:
Choose your team
Once you reach level 5, you'll be able to choose between teams Valor (red), Mystic (blue) and Instinct (yellow) at a gym.
There's absolutely no difference in which team you choose, but they are all represented by different legandary Pokemon (Moltres, Articuno, and Zapdos respectively) who are headed by different leaders: Team Valor is Candela, Team Mystic is Blanche, and Team Instinct is Spark.
It might be worth keeping in mind which teams are actively represented in your area, as with a strong dominance by a certain team, will help you hold a gym for a longer period of time.
Transfer weaker Pokemon to Professor Oak
There's no point in keeping all those weak Zubats and Rattatas, as they'll just take up unnecessary space and contribute to you hitting your maximum number of Pokemon (which is 250 unless you upgrade using those illusive Gold Coins). Transferring a Pokemon to Professor Oak will permanently remove the Pokemon from your list, and in return you'll receive one candy specific to that Pokemon, which can be used to both power up and evolve that Pokemon.
To transfer your Pokemon simply tap the Pokeball, tap 'Pokemon', select the Pokemon you want to transfer (be sure to note the Combat Power, as you'll want to keep the Pokemon with higher CP - see below for another tip on which Pokemon to keep), hit the menu icon at the bottom right-hand corner of the screen and tap 'Transfer'.
The Pokemon will be removed from your roster, and you'll gain a Pokemon candy in return. Happy days!
Evolve the right Pokemon
If you have a bunch of Pokemon you wish to evolve, it might be hard knowing which one to invest that all important Candy on.
Thankfully there are tools to help you. First of all, you'll want to look to evolve the Pokemon with the highest CP. For example, in our screenshot below we've got a Magikarp with a 147CP. If we had one at 30CP, we would naturally aim to keep the 147CP Magikarp, as it will yield a much stronger Gyarados; 147CP evolves to a 2002CP Gyarados, whilst the 30CP one would be 400CP.
You might be wondering how we are calculating our CPs. Well, we are using a Pokemon GO toolkit. In this case, the Evolution Calculator (you'll find relevant toolkit apps free on both the iOS and Android app stores).
Through the evolution calculator, you'll see an estimate CP range (1541 - 2248) with a most likely CP of 2002. This does all depend on your trainer level, as you'll get better CP evolutions the higher your trainer level.
Before you hit the evolve button, you'll want to check the IV (individual values) of your Pokemon. This is only useful if you care about getting the strongest and most capable Pokemon for gym battles. If you're only interested in catching them all, then you won't have to worry about the IV stats.
However, if you're interested, when your Pokemon has a higher IV percentage, your Pokemon will have better Attack, Defence and Stamina stats. With a higher IV, your Pokemon will be much stronger once evolved. In this case, our Gyarados will not only have a CP of 2002, but will have extremely strong attributes.
So, before evolving your Pokemon, it's always worth checking the IV stats, if you're interested in remaining the king of the hill.
Use Lures at Pokestops for shared Poke-action
PokeStops can be great for stocking up on all your Pokemon GO accessories, from Pokeballs to Pokemon Eggs, Revives and even Ultra Balls - but that's not all they're good for.
When near a PokeStop, Pokemon trainers can assign a 'Lure Module' to the Pokestop (active for 30 minutes), which when active will attract Pokemon from the local area to that spot. The best part? It's a shared experience, meaning any nearby trainers will be swarmed with Pokemon for a limited time.
This also means that you can team up with friends and share Lures, making catching Pokemon in groups a little bit easier and more fun.
We would advise using a Lure Module alongside one that's active, in other words, having two Lures setup next to each other will yield a greater number of Pokemon to your PokeStop.
Use Incense when walking around
A Lure Module is only useful if you've got a PokeStop, but if you don't have one nearby or intend to be walking around, then an Incense is your go-to Pokemon attractor.
The Incense works in the same way as a Lure Module, but instead of being shared and at a PokeStop it will only work around you - attracting Pokemon to you only.
An Incense is useful if you plan to be walking around. If you will be walking through a park, where you can see several Lure Modules setup, we would advise using a Incense to better your chances in catching more Pokemon.
An Incense, like a Lure Module lasts 30 minutes, so make sure you time it wisely.
Power up your Pokemon
While evolving Pokemon is a thrilling part of the Pokemon GO experience, you shouldn't rush it.
Powering up Pokemon before an evolution makes them a lot stronger than evolving before powering up, as there's only a certain amount of powering up a Pokemon can do at any stage during its evolution.
In our experience we would only advise doing this once you know a Pokemon has a high IV and that you've caught a relatively high CP Pokemon for your level.
In our case below, we were lucky enough to hatch a Tangela from a 5km Egg with a 91-96% IV. So, given that it has a very good IV stat, we decided to power it up. We can't evolve a Tangela, however the same principle would apply to Pokemon which have the ability to be powered up.
To Power Up a Pokemon, simply find your Pokemon in your list, and hit the Power Up button. Be warned, you have limited amount of Stardust, so use it wisely when powering up your favourite and strongest Pokemon.
Keep checking for nearby Pokemon
It's probably a good idea to keep an eye on the 'Sightings' feature in the bottom-right hand corner of the app, as this shows you all the Pokemon in your area.
Don't be disheartened if all you can find are common Pokemon like Zubat or Rattata, as the selection of Pokemon changes throughout the day.
For example, Squirtle can be caught in our local park, but only at very specific times of day, so it's worth checking periodically.
Niantic have been constantly changing the feature, so expect changes in the Sightings feature - currently there's grass around Pokemon which are 'in the wild', meaning you'll have to explore the area around you to find them. Previously, there was a three-step counter, which was flawed and made it impossible to locate Pokemon.
Hatching eggs is always useful to get a good amount of candy. You receive eggs at PokeStops and can only store nine eggs at a time.
The Pokemon you receive from an egg is completely random, you've got 2-, 5- and 10km eggs to hatch. In order to hatch them you'll need to place them in an Egg Incubator.
To do this, click on your Pokeball > Pokemon and select Eggs at the top right-hand corner.
Tap on an egg you wish to incubate and tap on the Start Incubation. You'll need an incubator in order to hatch an egg, if you've used one already, then you'll have to purchase more with your PokeCoins or wait to receive them at certain levels (6, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35 and 40).
Now start walking, running or cycling slowly in order to hatch the egg(s). 10km is around 6.3 miles, 5km is 3.1 miles and 2km is 1.25 miles.
There is a different level of Pokemon you can get from eggs, see the screenshot above.
A Lucky Egg isn't to be confused with a normal egg which is used to hatch Pokemon. A Lucky Egg can only be purchased with PokeCoins or be received at certain levels (9, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35 and 40).
A Lucky Egg doubles the experience you receive in-game. This means with a Lucky Egg your Pokemon evolution will grant you 1,000 XP versus the normal 500 XP. This can greatly aid in levelling up, especially when you get to a higher Pokemon trainer level.
We would suggest using a Lucky Egg when you've got over 30+ evolutions lined up and when you're near Lure spots. This means that you'll get the maximum amount of experience, whilst catching Pokemon with ease when you run out of evolutions.
Before going into a gym and battling away, make sure you've got the right Pokemon with high enough CP to contest a gym.
Depending on the level of the gym, you'll have to win several fights in a row to take it over. You will thankfully have six Pokemon to fight for you in gym battles, so choose them wisely based on the Pokemon type that are defending. For example if there's a water-based Pokemon defending a gym, use an electric-type Pokemon to attack, as water is weak to electric-types.
To be an effective Pokemon-fighter, you should plan your attack at set times during a gym battle:
1) To fight tap on the screen and your Pokemon will attack, some Pokemon attack faster than others, but the faster you tap, the faster your Pokemon (if capable) can attack.
2) If you want to use your special, tap and hold on-screen and your Pokemon will perform its special attack. We suggest using this as a killing blow or if you know the special is Super Effective versus the Pokemon you're currently fighting. Note: If you're attacking a gym with multiple different Pokemons you can use the special on the following Pokemon, after you're victorious of course!
3) In order to dodge attacks, especially special moves from the defending Pokemon, you should swipe left or right at the right time. Usually, you'll see a yellow-type of line approaching your Pokemon, as that appears, swipe to the side to dodge the attack.
This can be the difference between winning all your gym battles and losing by a narrow margin. It's a hard technique to master, but once you get used to it, you'll win every gym battle, even if your Pokemon's CP is much lower.
4) Once you win the gym battles, you'll see the Prestige of a gym decrease. Where, if you have depleased the Prestige to 0, will be able to place your own Pokemon to defend a gym. If you're attacking a local gym, you'll increase the gym's prestige, fortifying it from opposing teams.
5) Depending if you think you'll be able to keep your gym it for a set period of time, it might be worth visiting nearby gyms to be able to claim more PokeCoins (more on this below).
It should be noted that since the app has been out gym battles have somewhat changed - with the fortification of gyms becoming a lot easier now. This is why you will see a lot more higher prestige gyms around.
PokeCoins and in-app purchases
PokeCoins can be used to purchase different in-game items. If you're not looking to spend any money in-game using real money to purchase PokeCoins, you can always try collecting PokeCoins by holding gyms.
We suggest finding a few gyms next to each other, which don't interchange within minutes. Placing your Pokemon in these gyms, and cashing out your PokeCoins when you think you've reached the maximum amount of gyms you can control at the same time.
To cash out, tap on your character at the bottom left-hand corner, click on the gold coin icon on the left and then tap on the shield button. Make sure this number is the amount of gyms you control. For example, if you are currently controlling three gyms at the same time, the number should be displayed as "3". This will grant you some Stardust and 30 PokeCoins (10 per single Pokemon in a gym).
Once you collect enough coins, you can purchase different items, where we would suggest Egg Incubators, Bag Upgrades and even Lucky Eggs.
Turn on Battery Saver mode
Pokemon GO requires the app to be open at all times in order to discover Pokemon, which can be a battery life killer - especially those of us without battery cases.
The good news is that Niantic included a Battery Saving mode built-in, which when enabled will turn off the display (but keep the game running) when it detects the phone being put in your pocket.
It's probably best to keep the sound on though, as you'll need to be alerted when a nearby Pokemon pops up!
To access the Battery Saver mode, simply tap the Pokeball, then tap the Settings icon in the top right hand corner and toggle the Battery Saver mode on. Read next: How to wirelessly charge an iPhone