Skip to main content

Microsoft updates OneDrive with automatic 'Pokémon detection'

pokemon go india nepal boxall
Image used with permission by copyright holder
Considering the number of companies which have opportunistically jumped aboard the Pokémon Go craze, it’s not surprising to see yet another follow suit. On Friday, Microsoft announced a new feature for OneDrive, its cloud mobile storage service, that automatically detects digital Pokémon from the augmented reality game in photos uploaded from your smartphone.

“A lot of [Pokémon Go] players take screenshots of their captured Pokémon to show off to their friends — both digitally and in person,” said Douglas Pearce, OneDrive’s group program manager, in a blog post. “We had to make it easier for you to find all your Pokémon screenshots, so we went to work and partnered with Microsoft Research to bring a Pokémon detector to OneDrive.”

Image used with permission by copyright holder

That’s all there is to it, really. If you’re milling about town and notice a Pokémon, just snap a screenshot of it. If you have the OneDrive app installed and its photo backup feature enabled, Microsoft’s cloud intelligence will parse the image for the over 150 species it’s capable of recognizing. Once it’s confident it’s found a match — i.e., that the cute Pikachu in your picture isn’t actually an Eevee — it’ll tag the pic accordingly.

That’s just one element of OneDrive’s Friday update. It’s also gaining the ability to generate albums automatically — it’ll group photos that you’ve taken in rapid succession in a particular location and pick out the “highest quality” ones — and will produce a collage every Monday morning of the preceding weekend’s festivities. And on the web, OneDrive’s gained a new section, “One this day,” which surfaces all the photos you’ve taken over the previous years on a given day.

Microsoft has beefed up OneDrive’s search and organizational tools too. You can now search for photos using emojis, if you feel so inclined, and initiate queries from OneDrive’s photo home page. On the organizational side of things, there’s a new view that surfaces all the folders in your OneDrive storage containing images (the idea is to make it easier to create and manage albums).

The update is rolling out to Android and iOS users today.

Microsoft is far from the first to tap opportunistically into the worldwide phenomenon that is Pokémon Go. Last week, business directory Yelp launched “Pokéstop Nearby,” a crowdsourced filter which lets users identify nearby businesses with PokéStops (Pokémon Go terminology for caches of Pokéballs, health potions, and other level-boosting goodies).

Last week, cellular provider T-Mobile kicked off a Pokémon Go unlimited data promotion for its subscribers. McDonalds recently launched inked a partnership with Pokémon Go developer Niantic Labs to provide digital Go goods to players dining out. And battery case manufacturer Zagg, which has heavily promoted its portable power packs as “ideal” for long Pokémon Go sessions, saw its stock price soar 25 percent in the past week.

But app’s popularity has driven meteoric foot traffic to local businesses too. An enterprising café in Lawrenceville, Pennsylvania, saw sales skyrocket after it began offering a 10 percent discount to patrons who used the app, and food and drink sales at Manhattan pizza joint L’inizios jumped 30 percent following the launch of its Pokémon-themed pizzas.

Given Pokémon Go’s momentum — the app managed to attract an estimated 9.5 million daily active users in the United States in just shy of a week — outfits large and small are sure to follow suit.

Editors' Recommendations

Kyle Wiggers
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Kyle Wiggers is a writer, Web designer, and podcaster with an acute interest in all things tech. When not reviewing gadgets…
Dragon Quest Walk is a new location-based mobile AR game similar to Pokémon Go
dragon quest walk ar mobile game pokemon go dragonquest announcement feat


Bringing video game characters to life through augmented reality and having gamers interact with them via their mobile devices is a growing business opportunity. Niantic knocked this idea out of the park with Pokémon Go and Square Enix is hoping to do the same with another popular Japanese franchise. Reported by The Verge, Square Enix announced the mobile AR game Dragon Quest Walk for iOS and Android.

Read more
Niantic Labs will soon drop support for Pokémon Go on Apple Watch
pokemon go apple watch support

Pokémon Go players who have the Apple Watch as part of their Pokémon hunting arsenal should rethink their strategy, as Niantic Labs said that the smartwatch will no longer be able to connect to the mobile game after July 1.

Niantic Labs rolled out Apple Watch support for Pokémon Go in December 2016, connecting the smartwatch's fitness tracking features with the step requirements in the mobile game. Players also started receiving push notifications on their watchOS devices when they were in the vicinity of Pokémon to catch or PokéStops, when their eggs hatched, or when they received medals. However, in order for players to catch Pokémon, they still needed to launch the Pokémon Go app on their iPhone.

Read more
Pokémon Go celebrates Detective Pikachu with 10-day double XP event
Detective Pikachu Pokemon Go special ten 10 day event double XP

Almost nothing in the Pokémon world is allowed to go down without a Pokémon Go related tie-in and Detective Pikachu is no exception. In celebration of the upcoming film, there will be a Pokémon Go Detective Pikachu event running for 10 days. Things start on May 7 and end on May 17. Throughout, you will have a higher chance to capture specific Pokémon featured in the movie, gain extra experience, and grab special cosmetic items themed around the movie.

Detective Pikachu is the first live-action Pokémon movie and it is led by Ryan Reynolds, who voices the titular character, and Justice Smith. Since it's a live-action film, it features some interesting realistic designs for characters we’ve only seen animated for games or the animated series. While some look more terrifying than others, there is nothing so outrageous as the soon-to-be-redesigned Sonic.

Read more