The Future of Foursquare: Value or Novelty?
Is it a revolution in location based social media, or the latest fad destined to fizzle out?
Any seasoned Foursquare user is familiar with the ebb and flow in interest with the application’s use. After initially registering for an account, the excitement that comes along with each additional check-in can only fully be understood by a fellow Foursquare user. Before you know it, you’re planning your lunch break based upon the likelihood of obtaining a new (or securing an existing) mayorship. Your nights out are swayed in the direction of adding to your collection of badges. You won’t even commit to where you grab a cup of coffee before scouting the other Foursquare users in attendence.
The check-ins keep coming, but the badges and mayorships don’t . “[Insert mayor's name here] cheats. There’s no way he/she is here more often than me. I live here.” The push notification to your smart phone alerting you that a quasi-acquaintance is at the grocery store across town is more irritating than informative. Your co-worker is the mayor of the cubicle next to you, bathroom stall number 4, his parents’ garage, his favorite park bench, and won’t stop bragging how much better at Foursquare he is than you.
The novelty has worn thin.
I now present to you, two possible paths for Foursquare. Path number one leads to an impending lull in curiosity and eventual demise. Path number two makes Foursquare the most important location based application your smart phone will ever need. The outcome lies squarely in Foursquare’s hands.
Read the rest of this post at TECH Cocktail.
So I just crossed one item off of my bucket list.
The earthquake’s origins were in Baja, Mexico, but the BPM’s of my heart monitor would indicate the quake was isolated inside my apartment. In hindsight, it was no big deal. The walls and floor rumble for a half a minute, your dishes shake, and you pee yourself a little. Kind of fun actually. But it’s also educational. You learn a lot about yourself. Here’s what I learned about The Good Badger during an earthquake .
- Entirely unprepared. My initial reaction was to lay in bed. My next reaction was to duck and cover. Luckily I was with gf who is much smarter than I. As soon as she could get me to stop crying, we fled outside.
- Entirely unprepared pt. II. On my way out, I forgot to grab my shoes, wallet, keys, or any snacks. Upsetting, but not the end of the world. What is far more traumatic, however, is forgetting my iPhone. How was I supposed to Tweet my paranoia, check in on Foursqure (you’ll see in a minute), tell mom not to worry (in a very worried tone), or even find news about the earthquake. Fortunately 12 of the 12 neighbors around me had their iPhones and were kind enough to show me the drop pin of the earthquake’s epicenter no more than 10 minutes after it occurred (awesome). iPhone, will you ever forgive me?
- Technology is Awesome. Within minutes the TwitOSphere was overrun with fellow San Diegons giving their 140 character takes on the situation. True, nothing anyone said saved, prevented, or helped anything, only because their was nothing to save. With that said, there’s a calming presence knowing other people are going through the same thing. Had the situation been worse, however, Twitter has proven to be a life saving resource.
- Technology is Awesome pt II. A new social media service has poked its head into the emergency reaction game- Foursquare. For those who are still unfamiliar, Foursquare is a location based, social-networking service, where users “check in” to different establishments to notify their friends of their whereabouts and collect badges. One of the more highly sought after badges, The Swarm Badge, is acquired after you check in to the same establishment with at least 49 other Foursquare members simultaneously. Within a half hour, someone created the check-in location “earthquake”, and over 70 people checked in. I’m guessing this is the first time the service has been used to check into a establishment-less event. I’m also guessing it’s not the last. Either way, I got me a Swam Badge, suckas!
My takeaway from this: Apple needs to invent an iPhone holder which you can put inside of your body. Maybe a surgically attached Kangaroo pouch. The iPouch?
Get on it Jobbs
For those who’ve been following Twitter closely this last week, you may have noticed an unusual number of your Twitter users bragging that they’ve:
“Just unlocked the ‘Swarm’ badge on @foursquare!”
Foursquare users can unlock this rare Swarm badge, by being one of 50 or more users to check into the same establishment at the same time. It should come as no surprise that a conference such as South by Southwest would be the perfect storm for such an occasion. Accomplishing this task outside of Austin’s SXSW conference, however, is far less likely. Steffan Antonas found one social media savvy business owner who took advantage of Foursquare’s appeal to drive swarms of people into his establishment.
Read the rest of the story at TECH Cocktail.
(My first story with TECH Cocktail. More to come.)