Location-based social media startup Foursquare has finally released its new Windows 8 app, which interested social media managers and community managers may have caught a sneak preview of at the Microsoft BUILD conference in June last year. The app is now available from the Windows Store.
And what a re-vamp it amounts to: the most hard-bitten social media manager would probably agree that drop dead gorgeous is the only verdict.
More than sharing
In the unlikely event that there are any social media managers or community managers out there who don’t know much about Foursquare, which is headquartered in New York, it’s a geographical location-based social network which lets users share where they’re visiting with friends through a smartphone app. When users check in to share, their Twitter and Facebook accounts can be automatically updated via their Foursquare account. They’re also awarded “Mayor” status when their check in number for a particular location reaches a set level (Mayors get special deals from venues which have embraced Foursquare).
The new Windows 8 app is a visual stunner, with all the functionality of the other Foursquare apps (Android, Blackberry, iPhone, Nokia S40 and S60, Windows Mobile 7 and Samsung Bada) but with deliciously bigger displays which make the task of digging around for where your friends are and what’s around you a delight. Every venue on the new app features beautiful photos submitted by users along with a grid of pictures showing which users are visiting them.
Foursquare clearly intends the app to be a means of exploring local areas, from coffee shops to restaurants and cinemas, and much else. And it can be used for local search without having to login to a Foursquare account, with users able to find out more about trending and top-rated local venues simply by swiping right and left. It’s not just about sharing.
As yet, there isn’t a Foursquare app tailored for the iPad but a tablet UI has recently been added to the Android app. Foursquare’s business development lead, David Ban, was tight-lipped about whether the bigger displays would come to tablet formats or desktops any time soon, but he offered a tantalizing hint about what the Windows 8 app has achieved, saying, “This has opened some eyes. It may well serve as inspiration for future projects.”