Niantic, Inc.

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Niantic, Inc
Formerly called
Niantic Labs @ Google or simply Niantic Labs
Industry mobile applications, mobile games, alternate reality games
Founded 2010
Founder John Hanke
Headquarters San Francisco, U.S.A.
Products Ingress, Field Trip, Endgame

Niantic, Inc. is a software development company best known for the augmented reality mobile game, Ingress.[1][2] It was formed by Keyhole, Inc. founder John Hanke in 2010 as Niantic Labs, an internal startup at Google.[2] It became an independent entity in August 2015, soon after Google's announcement of its restructuring as Alphabet Inc.[3][4][5][6]

The company takes its name from the whaling vessel, Niantic, that came to San Francisco during the Gold Rush.[2][7] The fictional in-game investigative project that provides the narrative premise for Ingress is similarly named The Niantic Project.

Niantic's first product, published in 2012, was Field Trip, a location-based Android app. The augmented reality mobile game Ingress followed in November 2012 as an invite-only Android app. It was opened to the public in October 2013 and an iOS version was released in July 2014. Niantic's second game, Endgame, is a transmedia storytelling project consisting of an alternate reality game, Endgame: Ancient Truth, novels by James Frey starting with Endgame: The Calling, and a mobile app, Endgame: Proving Ground.[1][8][9][10]

Niantic has notably taken an alternative approach to monetization, veering away from more traditional mobile application development standards such as ad placements and In-App Purchasables. Founder John Hanke has noted that Ingress is a sort of proof of concept, adding that a next step could involve packaging APIs from the Ingress application in order to entice developers.[11] Existing partners, marketed through the narrative of Ingress rather than direct marketing techniques, include Hint Water, Vodafone, Motorola, AXA, Softbank, MUFG, and Itoen.[12][13][14][15][16][17][18]


  1. ^ a b Frank, Blair Hanley. "Google’s Niantic Labs merges another virtual world with reality in upcoming game". Geek Wire. Retrieved 18 March 2015. 
  2. ^ a b c Markowitz, Eric (20 December 2012). "Exclusive: Inside the Mind of Google's Greatest Idea Man, John Hanke". Retrieved 19 June 2015. 
  3. ^ Kessler, Sarah. "Can A Startup Live Inside Google? Niantic Labs, Creators Of Field Trip And "Ingress" Try". Fast Company. Retrieved May 22, 2013. 
  4. ^ Olanoff, Drew (12 August 2015). "Niantic Labs, Maker Of Ingress, Spun Out Of Google As Its Own Company". Tech Crunch. 
  5. ^ Groden, Claire (13 August 2015). "Google's internal start-up Niantic Labs spins off". Fortune. 
  6. ^ Ingress. "Important Account Information: Niantic Labs is becoming an independent company...". Ingress Google+ page. Google. Retrieved August 12, 2015. 
  7. ^ Upbin, Bruce. "The Niantic Project: What Is Google Up To?". Forbes. Retrieved May 22, 2013. 
  8. ^ Rosenblatt, Seth Google's Niantic follows Ingress with Endgame Cnet retrieved 9th Sept 2014
  9. ^ Takahashi, Dean (17 December 2014). "Google’s Niantic Labs embarks on a giant interactive transmedia project with controversial author James Frey". Venture Beat. 
  10. ^ Robertson, Adi (28 July 2014). "Google is helping James Frey build a multimedia sci-fi juggernaut". The Verge. 
  11. ^ Newton, Casey (13 December 2013). "The everywhere arcade: How Google is turning location into a game platform". The Verge. 
  12. ^ Holly, Russell (25 February 2013). "Google makes Ingress codes available through HINT water partnership". GEEK. 
  13. ^ Hanke, John (19 August 2013). "Vodofone Germany Announcement". John Hanke Google+ Page. 
  14. ^ Niantic Labs, Inc. (1 August 2013). "Ultra Strike Weapon Revealed - INGRESS REPORT - EP19". Ingress Youtube Page. 
  15. ^ AXA Financial, Inc. (16 December 2014). "AXA and Google's Niantic Labs Partner to Integrate 20,000 Global Retail Agencies into Ingress' Interactive'Real World' Mobile Gameplay Experience". AXA Press Release. 
  16. ^ Softbank Group, Corp. (27 July 2015). "ソフトバンクショップがIngressに登場!". Softbank Press Release. 
  17. ^ The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Ltd. (20 June 2015). "BTMU announces a partnership with "Ingress", using its vast network of branches and ATMs as portals in Japan!". MUFG Press Release. 
  18. ^ Ito En, Ltd. (31 July 2015). "スマートフォン用モバイルゲームアプリ「Ingress」(※)とコラボレーション". ITO EN Press Release. 

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