A year of challenges and rewards

To our Wayfarer Community:

What a year it’s been! Since globally launching Wayfarer (formerly Operation Portal Recon) in October 2019, we’re ending 2020 with over 370,000 Explorers from over 150 countries who’ve joined the Niantic Wayfarer program. Yes, there were a few hiccups along the way (not to mention the prolonged uncertainties due to the global pandemic), and we’d have liked to deliver features to you sooner than we did, but you hung in there with us and still collectively contributed over 12 million reviews! Thank you so much for all of the hard work and many hours that you put in this year.

Here’s a recap of everything the Wayfarer team accomplished in 2020 (aside from the bug quashing!):


  • South Korea Wayfarer Campaign (cancelled early due to pandemic)


  • Wayfarer community forum launch!


  • Adding link to Forum in Wayfarer


  • New Wayfarer medal in Pokémon GO


  • New Image submission reviewing
  • Improved end-of-queue messaging
  • Updates to ratings bar


  • Poland Wayfarer Week
  • New Criteria Page and updates to Help Pages
  • New Darkmode
  • Support for Russian and Thai languages


  • Updates to the Showcase
  • Updates to the training quiz
  • Updates to the categories list
  • Updates to the rejection reasons

We have been so thrilled at how quickly this community formed, and the dedication and respect that so many of you continuously show toward our mission to build products that help us explore the world, exercise, and interact socially. The support that you have shown each other, offering advice on how to improve nominations and answering one another’s questions has been phenomenal. Again, thank you.

Over the next couple of months we’ll be charting out our next adventures ahead, with your constructive feedback in mind - so stay tuned for our Spring/Summer roadmap drop around February. In the meantime, stay safe, healthy and enjoy the holiday season.

See you next year, Explorers!

  • Casey and the Wayfarer Team
    (originally posted on December 2020)
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