Thankfully, it looks like the release version of Pokémon GO Plus will actually have several of those assumed-missing features after all! (That is, if you can get your hands on one.)
In an image released this morning via The Silph Road — a community known for having basically all of the Pokémon GO information –– is something we've reported on before. We were treated to a rundown of some of Pokémon GO Plus's features as reported by a user in the UK who managed to snag one early.
Features That Have Improved: Movement Tracking, Catching New Pokémon, And Lures
Originally, movement was not tracked by the Plus. This meant that hatching Eggs or utilizing the new buddy system couldn't be done unless you had your phone open still. Frankly, it sort of meant there was no point in purchasing the wearable.
That's apparently not the case now, though! This is a huge change and is enough all on its own to make the wearable something you'll want to purchase. There's not enough info yet to see how accurate movement tracking is (the app's could still use work) but the fact that it does movement tracking in any capacity is excellent and a smart move on Niantic's part.
The other great change that appears to have been made is the ability to catch Pokémon that are not yet in your Pokedex. As reported by user c-a-m-i on Reddit, the Plus was tested with a relatively new account and able to catch a Dratini despite the only Pokémon having been caught yet be Magikarp.
Again, this is a great change because it means the Plus wearable can now function essentially the same as the game itself, catching Pokémon old and new.
And finally, it appears that Pokémon which appear as a result of a Lure will be catchable. Previously, this seemed unlikely (though was technically unconfirmed).
Features That Could Still Use Work: Incense Pokémon, Poke Ball Usage, And Rewards
Unfortunately, while Lured Pokémon appear to work with the Plus, those that would normally appear as a result of Incense do not. This isn't a huge deal, but means that you'll have to have your phone open if you want to catch those bonus Pokémon. It also seems in line with the wearable's general interactions with the game's items.
For example, the game still does not have a way of changing what type of Pokéball you're using or a way to use a Razz Berry for an encounter. Especially now that the game can catch new Pokémon, this is a bit of a worry for anyone who wants to guarantee they are able to catch that rare Pokémon that needs an extra edge to wrangle.
Last in this category are rewards for catching Pokémon. Again, this isn't as huge of a deal, but the Plus doesn't seem to reward XP or Stardust after catching a Pokémon. You'll still get Candy, but if you were hoping to level — your character or your max-evolution Pokémon — easily, it looks like you'll still need your phone out for that.
All in all, though, the improvements that needed to be made got made and I'm glad to see that Niantic added them in before the Plus's official release.