This is 2014. We may not have flying cars, hoverboards, or self-drying jackets, but dammit, we can find new and lazier ways to eat good food. Take GrubHub (and its BFF Seamless) for example: a centralized repository of restaurants that will be more than happy to bring you food in the middle of an 8-hour League of Legends binge. Today the combined company is teaming up with Foursquare, so you don't even have to visit their website to get your grub on.
If you told me that you'd never heard of Foursquare, I'd call you a liar. We've all see the cross-posts from Foursquare on Twitter and Facebook. I'd find it hard to believe that you had gone your entire life without seeing Foursquare notifications, but if you told me you didn't know what Foursquare was for, that I could believe. Foursquare, at its heart, is a fairly straightforward location-based game.
You've got to respect the American Red Cross: they're just a bunch of people who love to help people. As a recipient of their assistance through multiple emergencies (hey forest fires, you suck) I've been delighted to see their various disaster apps pop up on the Play Store. But their latest tops them all: Team Read Cross gives you a ton of information on volunteer opportunities in your area, then "gamifies" the act of completing them, sort of like a Foursquare that actually encourages you to do meaningful stuff.
Foursquare is a neat way to keep your friends appraised of your location and activities, as is the custom in this day and age. With the help of Samsung, you can now see all your Foursquare check-ins through a living timeline called Time Machine. Even if you don't have a Foursquare account, check out the demo. It's really cool.
Time Machine is an aerial view of your check-ins laid out chronologically.
Foursquare received a significant update today, adding new features like nearby friends and places on the home screen map, and a "Best Nearby" button that allows you to see highly rated locations in your general vicinity. Here's the full changelog:
We’ve made some big changes, making it easier to quickly find the best stuff nearby:
✓ Explore is at the top of the home screen so you can quickly find whatever you’re craving.
Believe it or don't, Fourquare has grown beyond hipster urbanites who desperately want to be the Mayor of the 6th Street Starbucks. More than a few businesses - independent or otherwise - are seeing the value in the location-based service. To that end, Foursquare has released its free business app on the Play Store, allowing local managers to update their business status for single or multiple locations.
Within the Foursquare for Business app, you can keep tabs on recent check-ins, set specials for users, and look up in-depth statistics for your business's performance on Foursquare.
Foursquare may be the king of the check-in game (they're boasting over 7 million users and over 500 million check-ins last year), but that won't keep them resting on their laurels. Launching tonight on the Android Market, Foursquare 3.0 will introduce several notable changes that could fundamentally alter how the service is used.
Foursquare founder Dennis Crowley explains that, because of the effort put into scaling the service for such a wide increase in users, they haven't been able to innovate and improve it as much as they hoped.
The official Google Maps app has been updated again, this time with a major addition to Latitude - check-ins. Just as Hotpot seemed to be a Yelp-killer, Google must now have Foursquare in its sights, because Latitude's check-ins have a few major advantages over Foursquare and its competitors.
Latitude will notify you when it recognizes your location, giving you the option to check-in wherever you are. However, you can also set up automatic check-ins for only the places you want, an incredibly convenient feature that still covers any privacy concerns.