Several times this week, and many times since the launch of Pokemon Go, Trainers who originally signed up with PTC (Pokemon Trainer Club) have been unable to log into the game. To alleviate this problem, Niantic recently made it possible to link your PTC account to your Google and/or Facebook accounts, but it seems that many players are not clear on the method for successfully doing so.
Let us clear up any confusion and help to make sure no one has to go through the frustration of not being able to log into the game — here’s the complete method for linking your Google and/or Facebook accounts to your existing PTC account.
Step 1: Find the setting
To start the account linking process, you first need to load up your game and go into the settings:
Step 2: Linking time
Once you’re in the settings menu, scroll down to the section that allows you to link your Google and Facebook accounts:
A lot of confusion seems to come from the fact that the Google and/or Facebook account that you want to link mustn’t already be in use as a means of logging into any Pokemon Go account. If they are, you’ll need to create a new Google and/or Facebook account and then link those ones instead. The login details for that new Google and/or Facebook account will then be the ones you will use to log into Pokemon Go.
If you’re concerned about privacy, we suggest you make a Google account that will only be used for this purpose.
Step 3: Wrapping it up
Once you’ve linked a Google and/or Facebook account you need to log out and then log back in using Google or Facebook – NOT PTC. This is because the game tries to automatically log you in using the service you were last logged in with, so if you were logged in with PTC and it goes down, you aren’t getting back in until it’s fixed.
You should then have no further problems logging into the game if/when PTC next goes down. If the above method is still unsuccessful, please contact @nianticsupport on Twitter.
Does Niantic have access to my Facebook profile?
No. Niantic has access only to your basic profile information that’s required for Facebook authentication to work.
Will I loose my account if I unlink a login provider?
No. Login providers are not the same thing as your Pokémon GO account. Removing them just breaks the “link” between that service and your Pokémon GO account.
In technical terms, how does account linking work?
Actually, the process is quite simple. Your Pokémon account resides in Niantic’s database. Niantic is storing your Trainer ID, but also authorised IDs from other services which can be used to log in: Google and Facebook at the moment. Upon logging in with any of those services, Niantic will look up their database for a user with that service’s ID, and if it exists, allow the login request.
A photorealistic rendering of the engine in action is available here: