Bizzy Challenges The Droid Guy to Check Out South By South West

Posted on Mar 14 2011 - 1:09am by Kyle

We had lunch today with the folks from Bizzy. Bizzy is a new location based app, but better than that they are looking to change the paradigm from the traditional check in apps.

Sure everyone “changes the paradigm” we must have seen 1390493 game changers since we got into Austin for South By South West.  So Bizzy CEO Gadi Shamia, shows me at the lunch table. We were eating at Cedar Door and the service was so lousy he had plenty of time to show us.  Shamia takes out a pen and draws on a napkin showing the normal, popular location based apps.

“What do you do” he asks and continues, “You check in” and then he asks the most important question of the meeting…

“And then what” sure there is the game aspect in Foursquare, and even GoWalla, then there’s the merchant aspect in delivering offers, but the question raises some great points, and then what…

Bizzy’s Vice President of Marketing, Ryan Kuder, starts to explain that with Bizzy you don’t check in, you check out. You share your experience with other users using a simple easy to distinguish smiley face system. You can choose from three smileys love it, meh and No Thx. You can also leave a bizzy tip  about the establishment for future users. Bizzy’s ratings system isn’t just for food their categories are divided into: restaurants, bars and nightlife, coffee and tea, shopping, food & grocery, Ice Cream and Frozen Yoguyt, entertainment, sports and recreation, beauty & spa, education, event planning health & medical, home services, hotel & travel, local services, and pets.

Check out more about Bizzy after the break

The rating system is just the beginning. From that point Bizzy aggregates the ratings and uses their algorithm to recommend businesses to other users based on the “love its”.  One of the great things about Bizzy as Kuder explained is that the recommendation can’t be infiltrated by a disgruntled customer who spams in a bunch of no thx either.

So can three smiley faces really change the face of the location based app? Absolutely. If Bizzy evolves the way Kuder and Shamia expect than it will progress because it’s a mix of geo-location and discovery tool.  How many times have you gone to foursquare to find a great place to eat. That’s more of a yelp thing.

Another great thing that Kuder pointed out was that their is a flaw in Foursquare based recommendations. If you take a recommendation based on check ins alone it may not be the best place.  Kuder used the example of a coffee shop saying that there is a coffee shop he really likes roughly a 10 minute drive from his California home however there is a coffee shop that is just “OK” which is a 3 minute walk from his home. He usually gets the chance to go to the coffee shop he really likes once a week but the one by his house he goes to everyday out of convenience. Using Foursquare’s methodology the close shop is better right?

So Bizzy challenged us to use it for 3 days here in Austin and let the app get used to us as users and then review it. So we will. The challenge is on and we’re checking out, in Austin.

As for Cedar Door, it took about 30 minutes to get a waitress to come by, sodas were never refilled, and once they dropped the check they rushed us out. The food was meh, the margarita’s were great and overall it got a no thx.

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