- Tips are useful
- Can be interesting in big cities
- Boring interface
- Small- to mid-sized cities have little content
Foursquare (Free) is a social-networking app that helps users connect with friends and find new things to do in their hometowns. Even though the Foursquare app receives a ton of buzz, it’s only as good as the people who contribute to it.
Foursquare works best in big cities
Foursquare is a social-networking app that helps you connect with your friends. Where are they? What are they doing? If your friends use Foursquare, it can tell you. Foursquare is also like a game, since you earn points and various badges (like Adventurer and Super Star) based on how many times you check-in to certain locations. Users can check-in to bars, restaurants, sports stadiums, and parks and see who else has checked in. If you check-in often enough, you can become the mayor.
What are the benefits to being a mayor of Foursquare? Mainly bragging rights. Some mayors earn perks at Foursquare-savvy locations -- like a free drink or discounts -- but I don’t think that is the norm.
The Foursquare app used to be limited to certain cities, but now you can check-in anywhere in the world. However, the app is much more interesting in large cities, where more users are checking in with the app. Testing Foursquare in a relatively small city (100,000 people) was somewhat of a disappointment, since hardly anyone else is checking in anywhere.
Even in a large city, I had a recurring thought while using Foursquare: What now? It is interesting to see if any of your friends are at the bar or restaurant you’re visiting, but the points and badges hardly motivated me to keep checking in.
One thing I like about Foursquare is the tips. When users check-in, they can leave tips like ‘the cheese enchiladas here are great!’ When tips are available, they make for interesting reading and are a good way to kill time.
The Bottom Line
Foursquare is an interesting app, but it needs to offer something more before I would become a frequent user. I do see the app’s value increasing as more people use it, and the tips are interesting when they’re available. Foursquare is worth checking out if you live in a big city. Overall rating: 2.5 stars out of five.
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