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If I collect all the XM in a region like a railroad station will other players arriving at the station after me be able to also collect the XM or is it consumed by me?

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3 Answers 3

YES, XM is shared across players.

When XM is consumed by a player, it is not available for other players until a certain time.

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That's not entirely correct. Two or more players can consume the same XM, thereby in effect multiplying it, if they collect it at roughly the same time. –  Matthias Urlichs Jul 27 '13 at 20:57

There seems to be some delay after you grab the XM before it will disappear on another scanner. It appears to be around 60 seconds.

If two (or more) agents are walking together, they will pick up the same XM. Even if one client scans the new XM before the other and picks it up, all of the XM still spawns for every player.

So, to answer the question: You pick up XM, but it lingers around for about a minute to allow others to also pick it up.

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XM is only shared with players to a certain degree.

It seems to have no unique ID and is not necessarily synchronized with the game servers. You can set you phone to airplane mode (turn connection off) and collect the same XM on a given spot with multiple players.

If you don't turn your connection off, however, it will be gone.

Note: I have no idea if this is intended or encouraged behavior by Niantic, some people might call it cheating.

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XM does have unique IDs, and the server does keep track of them. It's just that the pickup's sync to the other clients in the area is not instantaneous; Niantic may have decided that it's nicer to let more than one person gather an XM item, than to have the stuff vanish even though it's been in range of your scanner for a couple of seconds. –  Matthias Urlichs Jul 27 '13 at 21:08

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