Gone are the days when you need to check in to Foursquare. Starting now, Foursquare will provide recommendations about your immediate surroundings whenever you have the app open. The company’s own announcement of the change calls these proactive recommendations (see example screenshot below), emphasizing that the new feature is about interaction between the user and Foursquare. (Read: for now, don’t worry that people will be able to track you down because of this change. They won’t.)
TechCrunch reminds us that a very similar feature (then called Radar) failed a couple of years ago. Dennis Crowley, Foursquare founder and CEO, attributes that failure to battery drain, limited geofencing abilities, and data gaps on the company’s part.
As AllThingsD said, “it’s a crucial bet for the company, which is fighting perceptions that it missed its shot to sell out to Yahoo or Apple, and that it will struggle to survive on its own.” And while this feature seems like a playground for merchants, Crowley claims push notifications from retailers will be occasional and won’t be paid messages.
Will this new Foursquare help Microsoft decide to invest in the company?