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5 Best Travel Guide Apps for Your Android Phone

The day your long-awaited vacation starts is finally here, but you still haven’t had time to properly plan your trip? Our list of top 5 best travel guide apps for your Android phone is here to help. Apps on this list use real reviews to separate places that are worth your visit from those that you should avoid. Using your smartphone’s GPS you can receive suggestions relevant to your current location, so if you want to be spontaneous and make plans as your go, you can.

Foursquare

Foursquare is a mature search-and-discovery service launched in 2009. The app now has well over 50 million users, who enjoy its hyper-personalized recommendations and huge database of insider tips from millions of real people around the world.

Unlike many other discovery services, Foursquare firmly rejects paid reviews and unhelpful negative rants, focusing on the joy of travel instead. The app is designed to be a hub for your adventures, one that helps you find interesting places to visit, organize them into an itinerary, and associate each adventure with pictures, so you never forget what made that French toast you had so tasty or how your hotel room looked like.

The developers of the app have spent years tweaking its locational algorithms to perfection and making the app as battery-efficient as they could. According to our experience, Foursquare is much more power-efficient than most other apps that rely on GPS.

TripAdvisor

With over 350 million reviews by travelers like you, TripAdvisor never fails to recommend an excellent place to visit, find you a nice hotel room, or help you book the cheapest flight available. Everything is sorted out into appropriate categories, which you can explore using search filters and various sorting options.

The Near Me Now feature uses your smartphone’s GPS to precisely locate where you are and suggest you relevant restaurants, historical monuments, and events. If you ever happen to need help while abroad, you can quickly get answers from other travelers in the forums.

In case you don’t have roaming included in your phone plan, TripAdvisor gives you the option to download maps of over 300 cities worldwide onto your smartphone.

Trip.com (Formerly Gogobot)

Formerly known as Gogobot, Trip.com is an award-winning trip-planning app for Android and iOS that packs features from multiple apps into a single digital suitcase. Just like with Foursquare or TripAdvisor, you can find attractive places to visit, book the best hotel for you, or read reviews from other users.

To differentiate itself from its competitors, Trip.com also includes a simple photo editing app with playful filters, database of local events, and detailed statistics that tell you exactly why a certain place is so popular. The app is still fairly young so don’t expect it to have nearly as much content as the previous two. We recommend you to use it alongside either Foursquare or TripAdvisor.

Triposo

Triposo is one of only a few travel guide apps that work completely offline. Instead of building their own database of places, they take content from millions of websites and automatically sort it out, giving you personalized recommendations for over 50,000 destinations worldwide.

Search for any city that you would like to visit and download the full guide on your phone. Each guide comes with a map and information about the major sights, places to eat and sleep, and nightlife options. Also included in the app is a handy currency converter and phrasebooks with text-to-speech ability

yelp

Yelp

Yelp is the leading business review application, and it’s our go-to app for restaurant recommendations. Businesses are rated based on the overall experience, and reviews are encouraged to upload their own photos.

Even if you don’t care about the opinions of others, Yelp is still great to have on your smartphone just because it contains accurate contact information with business hours, phone numbers, and address.  Although, it is not known as a travel guide, it does offer reviews of all the major tourist destinations.  Great for researching places to visit and things to do at your destination.

Find Fast Food near Me with These Android Apps

When hunger strikes and your bank account is running low, fast food restaurants are often the most convenient way how to get the calories your body is craving. But let’s be honest: some fast food places stink—often quite literary. Unless you’re happy with going to the same franchise or two over and over again, you should definitely take a look at these Android apps designed to help you find the best fast food places near you. If you’re looking for the nearest fast food, you can filter in these apps, such as 24 hour fast food near me, or fast food open near me.  You can even find fast food coupons sometimes on the apps.

Yelp

Founded by former PayPal employees Russel Simmons and Jeremy Stoppelman in 2004, Yelp has a huge database of over 100 million restaurant and business reviews from users across the world. No matter where you are, you’ll be able to find all highly recommended fast food restaurants near you, read up-to-date reviews from other users, and sometimes even order food online via Yelp’s food delivery service or make a reservation through Yelp Reservations.

Each fast food place has an individual profile page with opening hours, photos, and other useful information. Yelp encourages visitors to actively participate by writing reviews, sharing pictures, and giving out ratings—all to help others separate visit-worthy fast food restaurants from those that should be avoided at all cost.

Google Maps

The best fast food discovery app is most likely already installed on your phone. Google Maps is the most accurate mapping service in the world, known for its 360° panoramic views of streets and accurate, real-time traffic information. What Google Maps is less known for is its huge database of points of interest, including all your favorite fast food places. Just search for name of fast food restaurant near you and it will show up on the map. You can then select whether you would like to travel there on foot, by car, or via public transportation.

Foursquare City Guide

Even though Yelp has arguably won the battle and become the best-known local search-and-discovery service mobile app, Foursquare is just as relevant today as it was when it launched back in 2009. Many users first met Foursquare around 2014, when the app was going through puberty. At one point, the developers weren’t sure whether Foursquare should keep on pushing social features or focus solely on local discovery. They eventually chose the latter, and the rest is history.

Today, Foursquare is a mature local discovery app with large, global community and countless useful features. The app encourages exploration, allowing you to make convenient lists for any occasion and share them with your friends. You can keep a history of places you’ve visited, so you can always just take out your smartphone and see with which fast food restaurants you were satisfied the most.

Hungry Now

No matter where your travels take you, a familiar fast food franchise can instantly transport you back home, reassuring you that the world isn’t so big after all. Be it McDonald’s, KFC, Starbucks, Domino’s Pizza, El Pollo Loco—we all have our favorites. Hungry Now is perfect for people who want to easily locate fast food restaurants of selected franchises, instead of browsing through thousands of local reviews and applying a whole bunch of filters just to locate the nearest Starbucks.

Find Fast Food

Find Fast Food is a great alternative to Hungry Now. It allows you to find fast food restaurants in your local area, including Subway, McDonald’s, Pizza Hut, KFC, Starbucks, Burger King, Wendy’s, Taco Bell, Domino’s Pizza, Dunkin’ Donuts, Diary Queen, Papa Johns, Nando’s, Hungry Jack’s, and Red Rooster. The app is completely free and runs on Android 2.2 and higher. Keep in mind that Find Fast Food is for local discovery only. If you want to plan for a trip or see which fast food restaurants are in another city, move on to the last app on this list.

All new Foursquare now available from the Google Play Store

Foursquare Update

Foursquare Update

Not too long ago, Foursquare introduced a breakaway app called Swarm which would deal with the user check-ins and the social aspect of the app. Foursquare itself was said to be going through a makeover, both in terms of functionality and visuals. Well, that has finally materialized today with the all new Foursquare hitting major app hubs including the Google Play Store.

With this new version of the app, you won’t be dealing in check-ins but rather finding recommendations on where to go next. Users are asked to give as many keywords as possible (ex: fried chicken, sushi, beer) and based on those keywords, the app will search for the best places within your proximity.

It’s quite a change from the makers of Foursquare to remove check-ins from the app and bring something entirely new, which might take some getting used to for existing users. If you would like to know where your friends are hanging out, Swarm is probably your best bet right now. Despite the changes, Foursquare will still let you follow other users of matching tastes, so the social aspect of the app is not completely gone.

The update should be live now in most regions, but if it’s not, make sure you hit the Play Store link below and check if it’s available. The update will be immediately noticeable as it brings an all new icon and new UI elements as well.

https://youtu.be/CvMVFGOJ2Z0

Source: Google Play Store

Via: Android Police

Foursquare app for Android gets a new logo and design

Foursquare Logo

Foursquare Logo

Social app Foursquare is going through another makeover with the developers teasing an all new logo as well as a refreshed user interface. The developers claim that the new update will increase accuracy of suggestions based on your past check-ins and provide specifically tailored results to increase efficiency. For now, only an iOS version of the app has been shown in a screenshot, but rest assured the Android version is on its way too.

The app is trying to stand out from the competition by providing a complete visual overhaul. The logo looks completely changed from what we’ve seen before, so it’s clear that the developers are taking this quite seriously.

Foursquare said the following on its blog – “Why should two very different people get the same recommendations when they visit Paris? Or the same list of places when they’re looking for a bar?  We’re about to change that.” We’re not sure what this means, but it seems like the developers are hinting at a more personal approach towards suggestions, which could be good for the users. Unfortunately, there’s no specific launch date for this new and improved Foursquare yet.

Foursquare Screenshot

Source: Foursquare Blog

Via: Phandroid

Foursquare Releases Its New Meetup App Swarm At The Google Play Store

A few weeks ago Foursquare announced that it would be splitting its popular location sharing app into two distinct apps. The original Foursquare app will be revamped to help users find interesting places while a new app called Swarm will be the one that comes with a check-in feature. Today, the Swarm app has finally been released over at the Google Play Store and is available as a free download.

swarm

Swarm basically has the check-in feature of Foursquare and comes with a “Neighborhood Sharing” feature that allows a user to see if friends or other Swarm users are located nearby. This feature makes it easier for people to spontaneously meet and make plans. This new feature also comes with a Stealth mode just in case users don’t want to be spotted.

For those interested to know if the Mayorship, Badges, or Rewards points system is still available the answer is it isn’t. Swarm uses a fresh approach on the Mayorship system which it calls Mayors 2.0. Users will be able to compete for the Mayorship of a certain location only among their group of friends. The company says that they made this change “So you and your friends can compete for the mayorship of your favorite bar, without having to worry about the guy who is there every single day.”

This new app also comes with a Plan board that allows a user to post a plan which is visible to his or her group of friends living nearby. The company describes this as “Swarm plans are different. It’s a new riff on planning, focusing on your nearby friends. There’s no invite list, and you can leave it as open-ended as you want.”

Some of the key features of the Swarm app include

  • Want to meet up with friends? Quickly open up the app to see who is out nearby.
  • Want to share what you’re doing? Checking in is faster and more fun than ever.
  • Got an idea for something fun to do? Easily message all of your nearby friends.

This new app comes with a 6.1MB install file size and is compatible with devices running on Android 2.3.3 and up. It currently has a 4.4 star rating out of a perfect 5 at the Google Play Store,

via google play

Foursquare Splits Itself Into Two Standalone Apps

One of the first location sharing apps to be available on mobile devices is splitting itself into two. We will soon be seeing the messaging app called Swarm which comes with a check-in feature as well as a revamped Foursquare app that will now help users find places.

foursquare

Why is the company splitting the app? According to the data that they have people usually use the app to either meet new friends or discover new restaurants, bars, and places to go to. Users of the app rarely do both. This is why it makes perfect sense to split the app into two standalone apps.

In an announcement that the company wrote on its blog, it said that “We spend a lot of time talking to people about Foursquare, and we constantly hear they use Foursquare for two things – to keep up and meet up with their friends, and to discover great places. Every month, tens of millions of people open up the app to do each.”

“But, as it turns out, each time you open the app, you almost always do just one of those things. At home, you may be searching for a place for dinner. After dinner, you are probably looking to see what friends nearby are up to. That’s why today, we’re announcing that we’re unbundling these two experiences into two separate apps – Foursquare, and a new app called Swarm.”

Swarm

This app is used when you want to check-in to certain locations and to check on your nearby friends. The company said that they designed Swarm to try to eliminate the need for people texting their friends “where are you?” and “what you up to later?” The app allows you to quickly know the answers to these two common questions. It will let you know who among your friends are nearby and who among them are ready going to the bar later. It will also allow you to share what you are up to.

Swarm is designed to be faster than the current Foursquare app so users can get the information quickly. It’s going to be released in the coming weeks for the iOS and Android platform which will be followed shortly with the Windows Phone version.

Foursquare

The Foursquare app will also be undergoing some changes. It will now focus more on discovery. The app will allow users to learn about new places and read about the reviews made by other people on these places. This app is expected to be released later this summer.

via foursquare

Foursquare for Android gets a major UI overhaul with the latest update

Foursquare

FoursquareFoursquare is one of the premier check-in applications in the world today and the Android version of the app has had a major part to play in that. The developers of the app have now issued a new update to the app on Android with an all new (but familiar) user interface and some other neat additions. First and foremost, the annoying Maps view is now gone from the home page and users can only see a list of what their friends have done so far in the day along with other activities. This gives for a more uncluttered view of activities and it’s easier to navigate between tabs as well. The developers have also redesigned the icon.

They’ve also tweaked the hamburger style menu on the left with a more Google like feel to it. Overall, the app is much more fun to use and the new color tone helps as well. However, the first thing that comes to mind if you’ve ever used an iOS 7 device is that they look strikingly similar. That seems to have made the developers’ job a lot easier. Head over to the link below to download the app or head over to the My Apps section of the Play Store to find the update waiting for you.

Source: Google Play Store

Via: Android Central

FourSquare brings a native tablet app to Android but not iOS

Foursquare

Foursquare has broken the trend and instead of releasing an iPad app went straight to releasing a native tablet app for Android devices. The new update features a new map browsing experience for tablets and larger screened phones, also there are improvements to the Explore feature. This is nice for the Android users of the world where as the iPad users have had to deal with a stretched iPhone version of the app.

Rumours are that the iPad version of the app isn’t far off from being released and the look and feel of the app will be exactly the same as the Android version, so iPad users will just have to used that stretched out iPhone version for check-ins for a little longer. The location check-in app has had a native app for the Sony Tablet S for a while but it wasn’t built buy Foursquare themselves, it was engineered by a third party and not fully featured.

It is important for services to hit the expanded market via the tablet devices and optimizing your app for tablets is definitely a start, especially since location check in is becoming more popular since Facebook added the option to check in to a location.

Source: Engadget

Foursquare Updates Its Privacy Policy To Display Full Names

Popular mobile check-in service recently sent out an email to all of its subscribers detailing their plans for 2013. One of these plans is the changes to be done in its privacy policy which is expected to take effect this coming January 28. The company will now display a user’s full name instead of the current mix of full name and “ first name, last initial” which they say leads to confusion.

Foursquare

Below is the full email sent to Foursquare users.

Hello Foursquare community!

2012 has been a pretty huge year. We’ve released over fifty new features, welcomed nearly 15,000,000 new people to Foursquare, and had our 3,000,000,000th check-in. It’s a bit clichéd to say this, but your support really is what keeps us going day after day.

As our product evolves, one of the things we do is update our policies to match it. And a big aspect of that is privacy (something we think about a lot). This email lays out a couple changes that we’ll be making to our privacy policy in the coming month, and explains how they affect you and what you can do about it.

We know that privacy policies can be dense, so we put together a high-level document that we think of as our “Privacy 101.” It describes, in an easy-to-read way, how we build privacy into our product. While it doesn’t replace the legal need for the complete description of our privacy practices (which you can read here), we hope it helps you better understand how we think about privacy. We’ve also added new explanations of how privacy works throughout the app in our FAQs, including our default privacy settings and how they can be adjusted.

In addition to creating and refining those documents, we want to point out two specific changes to our policy, both of which will go into effect on January 28, 2013.

1. We will now display your full name. Currently, Foursquare sometimes shows your full name and sometimes shows your first name and last initial (“John Smith” vs. “John S.”). For instance, if you search for a friend in Foursquare, we show their full name in the results, but when you click through to their profile page you don’t see their last name. In the original versions of Foursquare, these distinctions made sense. But we get emails every day saying that it’s now confusing. So, with this change, full names are going to be public. As always, you can alter your ‘full name’ on Foursquare at https://foursquare.com/settings.

2. A business on Foursquare will be able to see more of their recent customers. Currently, a business using Foursquare (like your corner coffee shop) can see the customers who have checked in in the last three hours (in addition to the most recent and their most loyal visitors). This is great for helping store owners identify their customers and give them more personal service or offers. But a lot of businesses only have time to log in at the end of the day to look at it. So, with this change, we’re going to be showing them more of those recent check-ins, instead of just three hours worth. As always, if you’d prefer not to permit businesses to see when you check into their locations going forward, you can uncheck the box under ‘Location Information’ at https://foursquare.com/settings/privacy.

The Foursquare of today is so different than the first version that launched in 2009, and we appreciate that you let us continue to evolve and build our vision. This occasionally means altering our privacy policy. When we do, we make it a priority to come up with clear ways to help you understand your privacy choices, and to communicate them clearly. If you have any questions or want more details, head over to our updated privacy policy or support.foursquare.com.

Have a lovely holiday, and thanks for being part of the nearly 30,000,000-strong Foursquare community. We have a lot planned for 2013!

– Team Foursquare

Foursquare was launched last May 2009 and now has an estimated estimated 20 million users worldwide. Aside from the usual check-ins you will also earn badges and mayorship positions which make it very engaging.

Apple Could Be Looking to Integrate FourSquare With Apple Maps

foursquare-logo

The Apple iPhone 5 and the iOS 6 operating system have garnered heaps of praises from loyalists and some critics. However, if there is one aspect where iOS 6 falls behind substantially in comparison to its competition, is in the case of Maps. Apple’s brave and bold decision to ditch Google Maps in favor of its own app kind of backfired in an unexpected way and the company had to recommend users to download third party applications which did the job better. This was a major setback for the company.

But it seems like the folks at Cupertino could be silently cooking up a fix for the ill-fated Apple Maps app. It is being reported that Apple is in talks with FourSquare to share local data. What this means is that FourSquare could see tight integration with Apple Maps in the near future. Apple’s Senior VP of Internet Software and Services last week checked into the Cupertino HQ via FourSquare while the head of FourSquare Dennis Crowley was also in town, which confirms that the two companies have been discussing this. FourSquare has a large number of locations in its database, and Apple Maps could certainly benefit from the integration. Its high time Apple did something about it, as people might soon forget that iOS 6 even had a native Maps app.

This report originates from sources cited by the Wall Street Journal and could well be credible information considering the course of events since the past week or so. Google Maps for iOS saw about 10 million downloads within two days of its launch, which speaks volumes of the users’ desperation and also of the popularity of Google Maps. With FourSquare integration on Apple Maps, things might get a little more bearable. But will it be a whole new experience? We doubt it. There’s still some work to be done when it comes to navigation and providing accurate satellite info. So until that happens we remain skeptical about this apparent partnership. Whatever the outcome, this would certainly improve the existing version of Apple Maps. And FourSquare would be more popular among the users, if people haven’t already downloaded it by now. As Apple already has Yelp integrated into Apple Maps, FourSquare should certainly bring a lot more to the table with local search. Let’s see how things pan out for the company in the coming days.

Source: The Wall Street Journal
Via: Phone Arena

Foursquare Rolling Out Promoted Updates to Generate Targeted Ad Revenue

Foursquare, the location based mobile app that gives updates about what’s going on at your favorite places near your current location or what your friends are up to in the vicinity based on preferences set, is trying to monetize their location driven service.

Foursquare is rolling out a new update called Promoted Updates. The name suggestively says what it is for. The app is being paid by businesses that would benefit from letting users know the deals and offers that they have at their stores around the user’s current location. Foursquare is being used by more than 20 million people around the globe. Last month there was a refurbishment of the app, when it launched additional features such as browse locations by category or do a specific search for services of things they want. So it is now possible to search for pizza or hot chocolate on the app based on where you are.

The apps Explore tab is where Promoted Updates will reside and users can use it to explore more about what’s happening around them, find deals from the most unheard of and unlikely places. Business would be enjoying this service now that can get a share of the apps’ power through increased targeting.

The app users are growing in number everyday. However businesses would have to put up with a ‘Promoted’ icon on the result, which they should not complain at the end of the day. Steven Rosenblatt, Foursquare’s chief revenue officer, recently released a statement in which he emphasized the point that businesses should enjoy the fact that they can now reach out to customers with an offer when they are near to them and most likely is in a purchasing position.

So when the next time a user searches for a laptop he could be targeted with an ad from a store nearby for a weekend sales offer. However, the ads will be shown to the user only when he is close by enough.

[Source]

Foursquare Introduces “Connected Apps”

The massively successful location sharing service, Foursquare has announced probably the biggest update since its inception: Connected Apps. Until now, developers had been using Foursquare’s API for building feature rich apps. But those were standalone apps, and could not interact with the main Foursquare app. This new update means to change that. Now developers can create apps which will work right within Foursquare itself, and will be able to provide recommendations based on user’s location. For example, you will receive culinary suggestions when you check into a restaurant; and weather suggestions when you visit another city or a country.

This update has come after Foursquare recently overhauled their mobile app, and introduced a completely redesigned user interface. Foursquare has partnered with quite a few companies to release a developers preview of Connected Apps. To quote their blog:

Our preview partners below can be found in the app gallery, which we’ll update again with our full launch:

Eat This, Not That – From Men’s Health Mag, Eat This, Not That tells you what dishes to order and what to avoid at restaurants when you check in

Untappd – Shows recommendations from friends and others on which beer to order, and easily check-in to beers from within foursquare

Sonar – Informs you of your connections to interesting people nearby

Soundtracking – Share and discover songs your friends have shared at a place

Snoball – Trigger charity donations when you check in, and tells you about friends’ donations

Foodspotting – Share and get recommendations on which dishes to order

GroupMe – Makes it easier to share your check-in with a group of friends on GroupMe

Blue Legends – Notifies you when you earn extra rewards for checking into Lufthansa venues

Instagram – Share your Instagram photos on foursquare, which friends can see and tap through to the Instagram app

Path – Share photos and text from Path, which tap through to the Path app

The Weather Channel – Get the weather forecast with your first check-in of the day and when you check in to a new city

This is an exciting step taken by Foursquare, and it is hoped that other major services will follow suit and help form an interconnected web of apps to provide a seamless user experience.

Plaintiff’s In Mobile App Privacy Suits Seeking Class Action

Earlier this year when Path came under fire for uploading the entire contents of users mobile address books (contacts) to their private servers, it launched a myriad of individual lawsuits. This week we’re hearing that 13 of those plaintiffs are seeking to build a class against a group of well known apps.

The new class action suit alleges that billions of contacts from the wireless address books of millions of wireless mobile users were stolen without their knowledge or permission. The lawsuit alleges that these actions took place in “homes, coffee shops, restaurants, bars, stores, and businesses all across the nation,” which turned the victim’s address books into, “mobile radio beacons broadcasting and publicly exposing the unsuspecting device owner’s address book data to the world.”

More after the break
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Foursquare Finally Receives Update With Refresh Button

image

I use Foursquare all the time, and one thing I could never understand was the fact that there wasn’t a refresh button in the check-in screen. Every time I open the app and search for a venue everything works fine, but as soon as I move to a new location I have to completely back out of the application because there was no way to refresh. The developers at Foursquare have taken a few years to figure this out, but have finally fixed one of my biggest gripes about the app. The fix was extremely simple and should have been done quite a long time ago. Usually updates this small aren’t news-worthy, but I can’t be the only person who thought the lack of the feature was a little annoying.

That being said, the update is here now, and Foursquare users can go download it from the Market as we speak. Be sure to check back with TheDroidGuy for more news and app updates, and stay tuned for our continuous coverage of MWC.