How to play Pokemon Go on a Chromebook

By | 08/03/2016

Want to play Pokemon Go on your Chromebook?

I have no idea why you would, but it’s totally possible to do so. Maybe you’re a hardcore Pokemon Go fan. Or maybe you want to message your Pokemon Go friends. Or maybe you’re just a terrible employee or student.I don’t know why, and I don’t care really.

Whatever you reason for installing Pokemon Go on your Chromebook, here’s how to do it, step-by-step.

Step 1: Make sure your Chromebook can even run Pokemon Go

To do so, the Play store has only been released for 3 Chromebook models. If yours isn’t on this list, you probably won’t be able to run it. If your Chromebook isn’t one of those 3, then check the full list and make sure your Chromebook is there.

If not, sorry, you’ll have to wait for the update to update your specific model.

Step 2: If your Chromebook is qualified, download Pokemon Go onto your Chromebook

Go to the Android Play store, and search for Pokemon Go. Download it.

Step 3: Allow permissions for the Pokemon Go app

Allow permissions for Pokemon Go on your Chromebook or else you can't play.

Allow permissions for Pokemon Go on your Chromebook or else you can’t play.

The app will ask for certain permissions on your Chromebook. You’ll obviously have to allow these permissions to play the game and launch the app. Some issues have been reported where the app won’t ask for permissions and won’t launch. Simply relaunch the app if this happens.

Pokemon Go will ask for permissions for the following items:

  • Location data
  • Contacts
  • Webcam access for pictures and videos

You’ll have to accept these as they’re integral to the game.

Step 4: Log into your Google account

If you don’t have a Google account, you’ll have to register one in order to play Pokemon Go. If you already have one, just log in.

Step 5: Understand the compromises before you play Pokemon Go on your Chromebook

Pokemon Go is a GPS-based game. That’s a given. You’ll need location services for the app to work correctly. The problem is that your Chromebook doesn’t have GPS built-in. So, what are you going to do? Well, your Chromebook will detect your location via your WiFi network. So if your service provider is accurate enough, you should be right where you are.

However, some service providers have their WiFi network located in a remote location from where you actually are, so you may see unfamiliar streets and locations. This is just something you’ll have to deal with.

The plus?

Your Chromebook is a portable device.

Take it with you. Instead of walking around with phone, you’ll be sporting a Chromebook. Sit down at a location with WiFi and go huntin’. Sure, it’s not as convenient as a smartphone, but why did you decide to use a Chromebook in the first place to catch Pokemon? Whatever the reason, that’s why it’s worth it to lug your Chromebook around.

Step 6: Play

Besides the GPS issue, the game works pretty well. You can buy stuff at Pokestops, go to gyms, and of course, catch ‘em all. But that’s if you find one in your location determined by your WiFi network, or wherever you happen to bring your Chromebook.

One other thing you’ll notice- the augmented reality (AR) feature doesn’t work.

If you try to use AR on your Chromebook to play Pokemon GO, you’ll likely see a Bulbasaur bouncing around on your forehead due to the webcam access.

So, besides the AR and GPS issues, the game basically works. You’ll be able to catch Pokemon while chatting with friends on Google Hangouts and Skype while watching YouTube while trying to type up your document in Google Docs.

And you can do this anywhere. Only on Chromebook. Only for geeks.

About Andy Z.

Andy is a casual-hardcore Chrome OS fan and contributes to the site regularly. He likes computers, tech, sports cars, videogames, and of course, Chromebooks. Thinker. Introvert. Geek. You can find him on Twitter (@platytech), or send him an email (

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