Nintendo wants to catch them all - invests in Pokémon Go developer

Is Pokémon Go just the beginning of Nintendo's interest in augmented reality?

Could Nintendo be making a big bet on augmented reality being the future of gaming? The company has teamed up with The Pokémon Company and Google to invest a further $20m (£13m) in Niantic, the company that is currently developing Pokémon Go.

Pokémon Go was announced last month and looks set to be an augmented reality Pokémon title for mobile phones - the idea being that you will have to travel around the physical world in order to catch 'em all. Niantic is the developer that was previously behind GPS location game Ingress.

According to IBTimes, the investment is $20m upfront - with another $10m promised if the company achieves certain milestones. Interestingly, the company started life as a department within Google, but following the corporate restructuring of Google into Alphabet, it has been separated.

Presumably attracting third party investments - like this one from Nintendo - was part of Google management's thinking in creating the new corporate parent.

Though what is perhaps most tantalising for gamers is that Nintendo's investment surely indicates that the company thinks augmented reality could be a significant part of the future of gaming.

After Pokémon Go, could we see other Nintendo properties be developed by the company? What about using something like the Samsung Galaxy Gear to bring the Pokémon Trading Card Game to life with 3D monsters standing on the table?