How ‘Pokémon Go’ Might Just Save The World

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chris-littlechild - October 12, 2016

  Pokémon Go, huh? What a damn thing. We’ve all seen the ridiculous headlines that have sprung up in the mega popular mobile app’s wake. ‘Dumbass walks into the path of Winnebago trying to catch Pikachu, is crushed into spam,’ ‘Dudes walk off of cliff trying to get themselves a Jigglypuff,’ all kinds of madness.  

Did you see that shot of a whole shitload of people wading out into the ocean, because a Blastoise had spawned way out there? Or the gigantic Central Park stampede caused by a stray Vaporeon? These are actual things that are happening. This is what Pokémon Go has done to the world.

The game’s got itself a lot of negative press, all in all. Still, once you reach Pokémon Go Teens Flashed By lazer-Wielding Pig-Masked Sex Couple, that’s pretty much rock bottom right there. The only way to go is up. So here’s something positive for your asses: Go is extending our life expectancies. Apparently.

As IGN reports, a study by Microsoft Research estimates that users of the app ‘added over 100 billion steps to the Unites States' collective physical activity in just three months.’ That is, we can all agree, a big damn number right there. It’s nowhere near anything exact, natch, but here’s the skinny (I’m about to drop some ball-busting science jargon on your faces right now):

‘Composed by Ryen W. White and Eric Horvitz at Microsoft and Stanford University's Tim Althoff, the experiment looked at 32,000 users' activity over the course three months "through a combination of signals from large-scale corpora of wearable sensor data and search engine logs," to "quantify the impact of Pokémon Go on physical activity." Of that number, they identified 1,420 users and measured the game's overall effect between July and August based on their use of the app.’

This adds up to an average 25% increase in peoples’ day-to-day physical activity, we’re told. Which doesn’t sound all that great, but if the game can maintain its current level of hypetastic, it sure will be. ‘It could have a "measurable effect" on human life expectancy, adding an estimated 2,825 million years to the human life span in the United States alone,’ you say? That’s not something to bitch about.

You can check out more details on the study back at the link.

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