Here's How Pokemon Go's Trading Feature May Work

"We don't want to just have that be an online game that you can just exchange virtually."

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Pokemon Go developer Niantic Labs has shared an update on the game's much-anticipated trading feature. Product manager Tatsuo Nomura told Polygon that trading will not be done through the internet. Players will need to be physically close to swap creatures, though a specific distance has not been revealed. Trading has not even been officially announced for the game yet.

"You shouldn't be able to exchange your Pokemon with someone who is 100 miles away from you. ... The person needs to be in your proximity," Nomura explained.

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This is no big surprise, as Niantic Labs has for a long time now said one of the main ambitions for Pokemon Go is to bring people together to make the world a better place.

"We don't want to just have that be an online game that you can just exchange virtually," Nomura said.

Trading is a huge part of the Pokemon experience, in video games and through the card game. Niantic Labs is still developing the feature for Pokemon Go, and it sounds like the studio won't rush it.

"We're still trying to come up with an answer [to trading] that makes sense so it doesn't kill the game,” Nomura said, adding that the feature is penciled in for 2017. "If we fail this, we can easily kill the game."

In other Pokemon Go news, the popular mobile game has crossed 650 million downloads, which is up from the 500 million figure that was disclosed in September. Additionally, a Pokemon Day celebration event is going on now, bringing party hat-wearing Pikachus to the game.

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