What's That App Called? Foursquare for BlackBerry

**As published at digiday:DAILY** Publisher: Foursquare Price: Free Platform: BlackBerry Advertising: None as of yet Functionality: B- Fun Factor: B+ Overall: B+ Not exactly a new social networking phenomenon, but new to BlackBerry, foursquare is one of the best location-based services available to BlackBerry owners. That said, there are still some kinks that need to be worked out – which is likely why it’s still in beta (version 1.5.5). After a couple weeks of use the app hasn’t lost its sense of cool. I held out against foursquare for what seemed like an eternity, but I still find myself wanting to “check-in” just as much as I did when I finally made the leap. The service has been making the high-profile rounds for at least a year, and with the BlackBerry capability finally on board, it’s sure to gain new users like me who held out until it reached their primary device of choice.

One major complaint with the service (at least via BlackBerry) is its seeming inability to accurately pinpoint my location when I request a check-in. More often than not, I’ve had to manually enter the full name of the spot I want to tell the world I’m hailing from at the moment. If many users go through that process, they’re really missing out on the key “location” feature set that defines location-based services (LBS). The real unique digital marketing opportunities are still mostly untouched. Some businesses will run promotions and discounts to entice foursquare users to check-in and tell their friends, but there’s no true interaction between location and user in any case. The opportunity here is glaringly obvious. The foursquare model provides an interesting points-based system, alongside a feature that allows friends to connect and essentially check-in together. But still, points and virtual labels like “mayor” of this place or that can only keep users engaged so long. The app definitely has the right approach and engaged community, but the lacking GPS functionality and noticeable disconnect between places and people ultimately keep it from being the “killer app” that it has the potential to be. At least for the BlackBerry.

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