Facebook Places. Game, set, match. Why? Because even though every last destination I visit hasn’t been loaded into Facebook, it means activating one less wonky app that crashes unexpectedly and then scolds me if I try checking in again. Another plus? People I know actually use Facebook. Foursquare? Not so much.
Facebook Places does to Foursquare what Twitter’s acquisition of Tweetie did for everyone else in the mobile Twitter app market: killed ’em dead, at least on the iPhone. I know Foursquare’s trying to put on a brave face, but if Facebook wanted to introduce badges and other rewards, it wouldn’t be hard and it gives people the all-in-one convenience they want in a mobile experience.
I used Foursquare off and on for months, sometimes deleting it from the phone, then reinstalling it if a friend convinced me to do so. It was pointless. The locations are silly, as are the tips and rewards. I know how it feels to be a regular at my local bar. It’s great. I don’t need an app to drive that point home. As I tweeted after Facebook Places was launched, “we don’t need no stinkin’ badges!” At the same time, I like to let friends know that I’m out if they’d like to join me someplace. Revive the drop-in visit! How fun!
Do yourself a favor and delete Foursquare already. You’re worried about privacy concerns? Here’s a thought: don’t bother checking in! I’ll go a step further and say that you should really categorize all of your Facebook contacts in a way that protects you from weirdos. That should be a no-brainer at this point in the game. As in so many things, be careful and have fun!