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Influence of Pokémon Go on Physical Activity: Study and Implications

Overview of attention for article published in Journal of Medical Internet Research, December 2016
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About this Attention Score

  • In the top 5% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • One of the highest-scoring outputs from this source (#6 of 2,123)
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (99th percentile)
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age and source (99th percentile)

Mentioned by

news
4 news outlets
twitter
549 tweeters
facebook
6 Facebook pages
googleplus
5 Google+ users

Readers on

mendeley
113 Mendeley
citeulike
1 CiteULike
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Title
Influence of Pokémon Go on Physical Activity: Study and Implications
Published in
Journal of Medical Internet Research, December 2016
DOI 10.2196/jmir.6759
Pubmed ID
Authors

Tim Althoff, Althoff, Tim, White, Ryen W, Horvitz, Eric, Ryen W White, Eric Horvitz

Abstract

Physical activity helps people maintain a healthy weight and reduces the risk for several chronic diseases. Although this knowledge is widely recognized, adults and children in many countries around the world do not get recommended amounts of physical activity. Although many interventions are found to be ineffective at increasing physical activity or reaching inactive populations, there have been anecdotal reports of increased physical activity due to novel mobile games that embed game play in the physical world. The most recent and salient example of such a game is Pokémon Go, which has reportedly reached tens of millions of users in the United States and worldwide. The objective of this study was to quantify the impact of Pokémon Go on physical activity. We study the effect of Pokémon Go on physical activity through a combination of signals from large-scale corpora of wearable sensor data and search engine logs for 32,000 Microsoft Band users over a period of 3 months. Pokémon Go players are identified through search engine queries and physical activity is measured through accelerometers. We find that Pokémon Go leads to significant increases in physical activity over a period of 30 days, with particularly engaged users (ie, those making multiple search queries for details about game usage) increasing their activity by 1473 steps a day on average, a more than 25% increase compared with their prior activity level (P<.001). In the short time span of the study, we estimate that Pokémon Go has added a total of 144 billion steps to US physical activity. Furthermore, Pokémon Go has been able to increase physical activity across men and women of all ages, weight status, and prior activity levels showing this form of game leads to increases in physical activity with significant implications for public health. In particular, we find that Pokémon Go is able to reach low activity populations, whereas all 4 leading mobile health apps studied in this work largely draw from an already very active population. Mobile apps combining game play with physical activity lead to substantial short-term activity increases and, in contrast to many existing interventions and mobile health apps, have the potential to reach activity-poor populations. Future studies are needed to investigate potential long-term effects of these applications.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 549 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 113 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
United States 5 4%
Germany 2 2%
United Kingdom 2 2%
Austria 2 2%
Portugal 1 <1%
Brazil 1 <1%
Finland 1 <1%
Sweden 1 <1%
Canada 1 <1%
Other 0 0%
Unknown 97 86%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Master 27 24%
Student > Ph. D. Student 26 23%
Student > Bachelor 24 21%
Researcher 9 8%
Professor > Associate Professor 7 6%
Other 20 18%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Computer Science 34 30%
Medicine and Dentistry 14 12%
Social Sciences 13 12%
Psychology 11 10%
Sports and Recreations 7 6%
Other 34 30%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 482. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 16 November 2017.
All research outputs
#10,162
of 8,751,028 outputs
Outputs from Journal of Medical Internet Research
#6
of 2,123 outputs
Outputs of similar age
#881
of 299,791 outputs
Outputs of similar age from Journal of Medical Internet Research
#3
of 427 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 8,751,028 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done particularly well and is in the 99th percentile: it's in the top 5% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 2,123 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 24.1. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 99% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 299,791 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 99% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 427 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 99% of its contemporaries.