Though the craze around Pokémon GO has mostly subsided by this point, few will forget the record-smashing launch that it had. Obviously, all those involved with the game's development grossly underestimated how popular it would be, and the game was positively riddled with bugs and instability in the first couple weeks. Now, the servers have largely caught up with the demand, but a Google engineer named Luke Stone recently made a blog post discussing the behind-the-scenes details of what was happening at the time.
At the beginning, the worst case scenario estimates for server strain were put at approximately five times the projected launch target. Within fifteen minutes of the Australian launch, the data already showed that they were going well beyond expectations, and the global numbers eventually rose to fifty times that of the original expectations. The strain was so great that the team made the call to upgrade to a newer version of Kubernetes – a cloud data management platform that Pokémon GO was built on – post-launch, which Stone compared to "switching out a plane's engine mid-flight". You can find the full post here; it makes for quite a fascinating read.
What do you think? Should Niantic have put their expectations higher? How well do you think they handled the overwhelming demand? Drop us a comment in the section below.
Wow, that's impressive! I didn't know they underestimated it that badly! Kind of puts the server issues in a new light.
The success really was a huge surprise for them, then.
This is crazy.
What they predicted made perfect sense. Hindsight makes any fool a wiseman.
I'd rather underestimate the numbers and scale up with a smile on my face than grossly overestimate the numbers and make cut backs with a frown.
I'd also rather things turn out far better than expected more so than if they turned out exactly as expected.
Niantic did a great job considering this was their first Nintendo franchise game.
Ultimately success is judged on the results and the results seems to be overwhelming.
I already knew this when the straining issues came up. What I was more surprised at was the people complaining about it when Niantic told people the issues. Although I'm quite shock to learn it was fifty times bigger then expected. As guess all that side loading was bigger then anyone could see. As the article says, it's like trying to change an airplane's engine in midflight.
Niantic should've put more care in this game
Never underestimate the power of Pokémon.
The full article is a pretty cool read. It's funny that without all the issues that came with the launch of Pokemon Go, there would likely be no Google CRE and other improvements to make it easier for future developers
I believe they had it at a reasonable expectation from a small company with little (maybe no) experience in this type situation.
Normally "everyone" plays Pokemon, in this case it was everyone, their parents, people who haven't played in years, robots, and people who call it "poke e men". Also the unexpected mass media coverage shine the spotlight.
I guess I can understand it on one hand. But the prehype for it (and it was there and huge) maybe should have been some kind of indicator on what to expect.
well if Niantic and Nintendo wanted this game to be controversial, they succeeded.
@Kit or sunny D.
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