Niantic Released Pokemon GO Update with a New Nearby Tracker

As most probably know already, the tracking system in Pokemon GO that is supposed to allow you to get an idea of where the Pokemon are has been broken since the first week of launch. Recently they removed the feature and decided to sue PokeVision for helping.

The feature represented a footstep counter that was rather confusing for many and didn’t provide what direction Pokemon was in, just that three footprints was further away than one footprint. Then, an update came where all Pokemon showed three footprints, and then it was removed.

However, Niantic finally released an update that is testing a new nearby tracking system for a “subset of users”.

Below is a visual of what the new nearby system appears like when being used:

If you aren’t really sure what you’re viewing, keep reading…

There are now two sections to the ‘Nearby’ view, Sightings, and Nearby.

Pokemon GO Nearby Tracker View


These are now the Pokemon that appears close to certain PokeStops. When you tap on one of them, the map will zoom out and provide an overhead style view, this shows the Pokestop you need to move towards.

It would appear that the developers decided if they were not able to beat the banned Pokevision, might as well, you know, join them in some way…

Now the PokeStops will have a circle around them kind of like the trainer does and if a Pokemon appears in that circle, it will count as a ‘Nearby’ Pokemon. The nearby Pokemon ‘should’ be around the Pokestop, but at this point, users have stated they find them usually within a block of a Pokestop.


This view shows the wild Pokemon with grass behind them instead of a circle image. This means they are not near the Pokestop, considered wild, and you will be hunting blind for them with no in-game guidance.

At this stage, tapping on a Pokemon under sightings does not seem to have any effect. Also, it seems they are not sorted by distance either. The only knowledge you have is that it is not near a Pokestop, otherwise, you will be walking around in hope of coming across your next awesome catch.

Update not showing

If you are opening the ‘Nearby’ section and not seeing any change, don’t stress it’s not you. Well, it kind of is, but not your fault. Niantic has only rolled out this feature to some players as a test run. This is the ‘subset of users’ mentioned earlier.

At this point, it seems the majority of users allowed in the beta test is located in large cities.

Note: Niantic stated that this is just a test, so it’s possible that things will continue to drastically change prior to everyone getting it. It would be nice if they release something that helps trainers in rural areas that do not have many Pokestops too.

Additional noteworthy stuff

  • When the Pokemon disappears before finding it, the nearby and sightings section now updates. No more running around for phantoms!
  • You will be notified by a pop-up if one of the Nearby Pokemon you are tracking (after tapping on it), has disappeared.
  • If you have moved out of reasonable distance from the Pokemon, it will also disappear from the tracking window.