‘Pokemon GO’ Update: New Patch Rolls Out With Apple Watch Support, But Still No Christmas Event

A new Pokemon GO update has arrived, but gamers eagerly awaiting the long-rumored Pokemon GO Christmas event may have to wait a little longer, as the new update again focuses on minor stability improvements, as well as availability for the Apple Watch.

Players have been hoping for a Pokemon GO Christmas event. With the overwhelming success and appealing features of the Halloween event and the Thanksgiving event offering a lot of the same, many Pokemon GO players were more than a bit miffed to find out that the first big update of December wasn’t as full-featured as expected. But hopes for a Pokemon GO Christmas event were still high, especially since Niantic Labs had rolled out past holiday events on the Monday before the holiday.


December 19, however, came and went with no Christmas event — there was a Pokemon GO update rolled out, mainly designed to squash a minor bug (vibrating alerts even when there’s no Pokemon sighting), but that didn’t lower buddy distance requirements for candy, double XP, and candy rewards for catching a Pokemon or make certain creatures more common. iDigitalTimes reported on Monday that chances of a Pokemon GO Christmas event didn’t look good, predicting that Niantic would get a lot of backlash from gamers if they were simply going to celebrate the holidays with a festive Pikachu and a few Generation 2 eggs.

“Get your pitchforks ready guys, a Niantic hate train is coming.”

Then again, it was reported on that same day that Niantic had included some code hinting at a Christmas event. The Silph Road wrote that the code included Apple Watch support, Christmas gift boxes with still-unknown content, and a new shop button design to celebrate the holidays.

Yesterday, Niantic began rolling out its latest Pokemon GO update, and just as expected, it comes with Apple Watch support. According to the Verge, the update doesn’t represent a “full game” version for Apple’s smartwatch, but rather a Watch companion app that allows you to perform some in-game actions without having to take your iPhone out of your pocket.


The Apple Watch companion app’s features include the ability to get notifications about nearby Pokemon and PokeStops, hatching eggs, and new medals, as well as the ability to count distance required to hatch Pokemon eggs or receive candy through your buddy. There’s also a feature that allows players to log game sessions as workouts.

Unfortunately, it looks like the new Pokemon GO update hasn’t triggered a holiday event as many had hoped. There are some minor text updates included, but there haven’t been any signs of a Pokemon GO Christmas event observed since the patch rolled out.

There hasn’t been a fix either for a freezing glitch reported by both Android and iOS users. The Inquisitr reported on this glitch earlier this week, and it looks like the best things to do if your game remains stuck on the home screen (the one with Santa Pikachu, Snorlax, and the Christmas lights) are to force-quit the game and restart it or to turn off GPS. These are both unofficial workarounds, as gamers continue waiting for Niantic to squash the bug on a future update.

Be that as it may, the one thing most players really want this week is a Pokemon GO Christmas event. The chances of that are still reasonable, given the APK sightings the Silph Road had picked up earlier this week, but Christmas is just two days away and the latest Pokemon GO update, while introducing all-important Apple Watch support, hasn’t coincided with the activation of any such event. Still, as Forbes had pointed out, it may also be possible that Niantic is delaying the update in order to cover all the other December holidays and not just Christmas.

[Featured Image by Olivia Harris/Getty Images]