Nintendo and Niantic are likely raking in enormous sums of money from in-app purchases in Pokémon Go, their new smartphone game that, seriously, I'm sure you know all about by now. That's exactly why it's unlikely that Pokémon Go will ever start charging a monthly fee — but scammers are trying to make people believe that's about to happen.
Your new addiction is still completely free
Multiple publications report an email going around, allegedly from Niantic, claiming that the "overwhelming response" and "need for more powerful servers" have led to the instatement of a $12.99 monthly fee to play Pokémon Go. Accounts will be frozen within a day if a player doesn't pay to upgrade, the email warns. Deadline even ran a story, now changed, saying all of this was about to happen.
Of course, nothing in the email is true. Pokémon Go remains a free game and will very likely stay that way forever — that tends to be the most successful model for mobile games. More importantly, if you did receive this email, be sure not to click any of its links. Variety reports that they lead to fake login pages that attempt to capture a recipient's email address and password. Niantic could not immediately be reached for comment.