This move is a means for Foursquare to break its business in half. It started as a check-in app, allowing you to easily share your location with friends and family. This feature set will live on as Swarm, a new Android and iOS app expected to be available in the coming weeks. A Windows Phone version will follow shortly thereafter.
For quite some time, Foursquare has been slowly shifting its focus. The company wants to be a location-based recommendation service, suggesting the best restaurants, bars, coffee shops, etc. based on your location, preferences, and check-in history.
“We believe local search should be personalized to your tastes and informed by the people you trust,” the company said. “The opinions of actual experts should matter, not just strangers. An app should be able answer questions like ‘give me a great date dinner spot’ and not just ‘tell me the nearest gas station.’”
To meet this need, Foursquare is working on a new, discovery-focused app, simply called Foursquare, that it plans to launch this summer. The company says the two will work seamlessly together.
Make no mistake, though—this is clearly an effort by Foursquare to refocus its brand around recommendations, rather than check-ins.
If you’re interested in the new Swarm app, Foursquare has set up a landing page where you can sign up for launch updates.