Cloud, Hardware Among Divisions That Outpaced Google’s Soaring HeadcountRead Now

Screenshots from NBA All-World. Credit: Niantic, HypGames, NBA, and NBPA.

Niantic’s Shot at Mixing AR and Basketball; HTC’s Metaverse Phone

By  |  June 28, 2022 11:00 AM PDT
Photo: Screenshots from NBA All-World. Credit: Niantic, HypGames, NBA, and NBPA.

If you squint, sports fandom doesn’t look all that different from video game fandom. In each, people have their favorite players (or larger-than-life characters), there are stats to pore over endlessly. Anyone with an impulse for collecting things can likely be drawn in by either pastime. It’s easy to see, then, how Niantic ended up landing an AR gaming deal with the NBA.

NBA All-World, announced today, is Niantic’s newest entry in what the Pokemon Go maker is now increasingly referring to as “real-world” games, a nod to CEO John Hanke’s belief in AR providing the foundation for a “real-world metaverse.” The game will come out on both iOS and Android and is expected to be up and running at some point in the next NBA season. With as many eyes on pro-basketball as there are, if Niantic and the NBA plan this rollout correctly, we could see an AR gaming boom similar to the one Pokemon Go enjoyed in 2016.

That’s a big if, though, and I might sooner bet on myself being able to make a shot from the 3-pointer line than on this game becoming a huge success. My first impressions of NBA All-World—from a presentation given to the press—was that it could use some fresher AR hooks or some more pronounced real-world basketball ties.

Get access to exclusive coverage
Read deeply reported stories from the largest newsroom in tech.
Latest Articles
startups crypto
2023 M&A Preview: Deals Could Be On Tap for Disney, Zoom Video, Vice Media
Art by Mike Sullivan
With just a month left on the calendar, 2022 could wind up being the worst year for U.S. mergers and acquisitions since 2017. But a barrage of deals could begin next year as investors and executives adjust to a new economic normal, bankers, lawyers and investors told The Information. A number of factors could spur deal-making. Investors are likely to get more clarity on interest rates,...
Latest Briefs
TSMC to Make More Advanced Chips in U.S. Plant
Sam Bankman-Fried Denies Knowingly Dipping Into Customer Assets
Musk Retracts Claims that Apple Considered Removing Twitter from App Store
Stay in the know
Receive a summary of the day's top tech news—distilled into one email.
Access on the go
View stories on our mobile app and tune into our weekly podcast.
Join live video Q&A’s
Deep-dive into topics like startups and autonomous vehicles with our top reporters and other executives.
Enjoy a clutter-free experience
Read without any banner ads.
Charlie Bell. Photo via Microsoft
Exclusive microsoft amazon
A Former Amazonian Hits Bumps in Push to Make Microsoft More Secure
When Microsoft last year recruited Charlie Bell, a top product engineering executive at Amazon Web Services, it was a major coup for the software giant.
Art by Clark Miller
The Big Read
‘I’m Licking My Chops. I Know It’s Going Down’: The Pissed-Off Crypto Traders Who Predicted—and Profited From—the FTX Implosion
Ishan Bhaidani had been patient for over a month, waiting for blood in the water. Now was his moment.
Data Point google
Where Google Has Grown
Alphabet has doubled the headcount in its Google Cloud unit since early 2019, according to data obtained by The Information, outstripping Alphabet’s overall hiring growth.
Art by Clark Miller.
Gift Hunting culture
The Information’s Top Tech-Adjacent Gifts for 2022
After the roller-coaster ride of the past month, everyone needs a little retail therapy. So, in honor of Black Friday and the upcoming holiday season, we’ve put together our annual gift guide, asking The Information’s staffers to share their favorite tech and tech-adjacent purchases of the last year.
Photo by Getty. Art by Mike Sullivan.
Opinion culture
Employees Aren’t the Only Ones Suffering From Burnout
We’re living in a split-screen world when it comes to burnout and the employee experience. On one side are all the investments CEOs and human resources executives have been making in recent years—and especially since the pandemic began—to support employee well-being and mental health.
From left to right: Mysten's founders, Sam Bankman-Fried, Aptos's founders.
startups crypto
Aptos, Mysten Valuations Look Sky-High With FTX Out of the Picture
Before it spiraled into bankruptcy, FTX spent hundreds of millions of dollars splashing out on investments in crypto startups.