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Pokémon Go servers down yet again

You need an internet connection to play Pokémon Go.

Pokémon trainers have always had to deal with hardships like tough gym leaders, that meddling Team Rocket, and finding rare legendary creatures. But now you can add a new obstacle to the list: overloaded servers.

Pokémon Go is experiencing another major round of outages as trainers in the United States get off work and yet out into the tall grass. Intermittent troubles have plagued the game since its debut last week. Many players are getting a screen that confirms the location-based monster-catching app’s servers are overloaded, and others are getting an “unable to authenticate” warning message. Now, on Friday, scores of players on social media are complaining about server maintenance. These issues are primarily due to an influx of players overwhelming the online service. Pokémon Go has already shot to the top of the download and revenue charts on Apple and Google devices. That’s an impressive performance in the $36.9 billion mobile gaming industry, but it also means that the servers for the always-connected game are struggling under the demand.

While some people are still able to get connected to the game, server issues are causing bugs where nothing else appears on the world map. Allow this tweet to illustrate:

GamesBeat has asked developer Niantic, the studio responsible for the game, for a comment on the state of the servers, and it pointed to its Tweet.

When Pokémon Go’s servers are down, the app is nearly unusable. Beyond the errors, Go relies on an internet connection to load in map data and to sprinkle Pokémon around your world. Without a cellular connection, it game would know your GPS location, but it wouldn’t load in the world around you. This is one of the reasons why the game does not work on Wi-Fi-only tablets.

Edited on Monday, July 11 at 5:15 p.m.: The game is once again having major issues.

Edit: Updated on Friday, July 8 as the outages continue. 

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Lithium-ion batteries have massively improved in the last half-decade, but there are still issues. The biggest, especially for EVs, is that charging takes too long to make them as useful as regular cars for highway driving. Researchers from the University of Warwick (WMG) have discovered that we may not need to be so patient, though. They developed a new type of sensor that measures internal battery temperatures and discovered that we can probably recharge them up to five times quicker without overheating problems.

Overcharging a lithium-ion battery anode can lead to lithium buildup, which can break through a battery's separator, create a short-circuit and cause catastrophic failure. That can cause the electrolyte to emit gases and literally blow up the battery, so manufacturers impose strict charging power limits to prevent it.

Those limits are based on hard-to-measure internal temperatures, however, which is where the WMG probe comes in. It's a fiber optic sensor, protected by a chemical layer that can be directly inserted into a lithium-ion cell to give highly precise thermal measurements without affecting its performance.

The team tested the sensor on standard 18650 li-ion cells, used in Tesla's Model S and X, among other EVs. They discovered that they can be charged five times faster than previously thought without damage. Such speeds would reduce battery life, but if used judiciously, the impact would be minimized, said lead researcher Dr. Tazdin Amietszajew.

Faster charging as always comes at the expense of overall battery life but many consumers would welcome the ability to charge a vehicle battery quickly when short journey times are required and then to switch to standard charge periods at other times.

There's still some work to do. While the research showed the li-ion cells can support higher temperatures, EVs and charging systems would have to have "precisely tuned profiles/limits" to prevent problems. It's also not clear how battery makers would install the sensors in the cells.

Nevertheless, it shows a lot of promise for much faster charging speeds in the near future. Even if battery capacities stayed the same, charging in 5 minutes instead of 25 could flip a lot of drivers over to the green side.

Via: Clean Technica

Source: University of Warwick