foursquare

Tim Bradshaw

It may not be the biggest Microsoft story around today, but it’s a big deal for Foursquare: Microsoft is investing $15m in the social-location app as part of a new four-year commercial partnership.

The $15m investment comes in addition to the $35m that Foursquare raised in December last year from DFJ Growth and Capital Group. The app lets users share their location with friends by “checking in” and then recommends new places based on where they’ve been in the past.

Although uptake hasn’t quite lived up to the hype when it launched in 2009, it has collected a lot of data since then: 5bn check-ins, 60m places and 40m tips, all crowdsourced from some 45m users. 

Tim Bradshaw

Four billion check-ins later, Foursquare is finding new ways to use all the location data that users have shared with the four-year-old smartphone app.

That includes both new features for users – and new ways to make money from the body of data it’s collected, with third parties. 

Tim Bradshaw

Facebook’s “Sponsored Stories”. Twitter’s “Promoted Tweets”. Tumblr’s “Sponsors” in Radar and Spotlight. A pattern is forming in how social media companies charge advertisers to promote their “organic” postings.

The latest to flip the revenue switch in this way is Foursquare.

More than three years after the location-led app took the South by South West Interactive festival by storm, “Promoted Updates” are Foursquare’s first big ad product

Tech news from around the web:

MasterCard is to invest in mFoundry, a company that provides mobile banking solutions for more than 500 US banks, TechCrunch reports. As part of the deal, mFoundry will offer MasterCard’s PayPass Near Field Communication technology to the banks and credit unions it works with. 

Tech news from around the web:

Google+ is now open to the public, the Los Angeles Times reports. After 12 weeks of field trials, the social network is still technically in a ‘beta stage’ however, with nine new features being added this week and more planned for the future.

Location-based app Foursquare has just clocked up a billion check-ins, says TechCrunch. On top of this, Foursquare has launched a new version of its mobile app for the iPhone and Android handsets. 

Tech news from around the web:

Research in Motion is in talks with the four largest record companies about launching a new music service to run on top of the company’s instant message service, BlackBerry Messenger, according to CNET.  At the moment there are very few details as to how the music service would work within BBM but it is expected to be launched within the next few weeks, sources told CNET. 

Tech news from around the web:

Location-based service Foursquare is to start incorporating daily deals from social shopping companies such as Groupon, LivingSocial, Gilt Groupe into its product, Mashable reports. Foursqaure plans to pass on daily coupons from its partners to the service’s users — taking a cut of the revenue along the way. 

Chris Nuttall

Several popular social networking services were knocked out on Thursday due to problems with cloud services provided by Amazon. The outages for the likes of Foursquare, Hootsuite, Quora and Reddit illustrates the dependence of many startups on rented remote computing power and the widespread disruption that can be caused if a single cloud provider has problems with its network. 

Chris Nuttall

Facebook Places, launched just five months ago, already appears to be sucking marketing dollars away from needy location-based startups such as Foursquare and Gowalla , according to a new survey. Responses from more than 8,000 local business owners in the US to a MerchantCircle quarterly questionnaire also suggest group-buying sites are failing to gain much traction versus traditional online marketing destinations such as Facebook and Google’s AdWords. 

From around the web:

  • Foursquare announced that the start up has added 5 languages and now has 6.5 million users, TechCrunch reports.
  • More details have been revealed on the rumoured “iPhone nano”, Cult of Mac reports. “The iPhone nano will have no memory for onboard storage of media, our source says. It will have only enough memory to buffer media streamed from the cloud,” Cult to Mac writes.