In 1959, Elvis Presley put out a compilation called 50,000,000 Elvis Fans Can’t Be Wrong. Countless bands have riffed on that title since then. Now that Foursquare is celebrating its massive milestone, can the cumulative efforts of 1 billion check-ins be so wrong?
I’ve been seriously anti-check-in thus far in life. It’s not that I don’t go to interesting places, but generally I am too busy enjoying those places to stop, pull out my iPhone, hit the Foursquare app and make my presence known. I may also be a bit lazy.
But 1 billion check-ins is serious business. To celebrate, Foursquare added a feature that might make me actually use the thing. The app now features a “Lists” tab that helps you keep track of places you want to go to as well as places you’ve been that you want to remember. As someone who keeps a notes page on my iPhone with a list of books I intend to read, adding another way to keep a to-do list is a very appealing new feature.
And frankly, Lists tab aside, maybe part of me regrets not being a bigger part of the charge to 1 billion check-ins. I know people who top my 10 check-ins in two years by the end of a weekend.Heck, maybe my indulgence in the world of self-importance doesn’t even have to come via Foursquare. There are plenty of interesting apps that do a similar job.
Loqly (Free) is an app that essentially documents the process that leads to your check-in. You can ask the app a question, “Where can I find a good burrito?” for instance, and let the community guide you to a place that you could check-in to. Granted this isn’t really the same concept of Foursquare, but it’s awfully close.
For something much more akin to FourSquare there’s Foreca.st. Foreca.st essentially is Foursquare except that you can map out where you place to check-in before you do it. Due to the laziness mentioned above, the idea of pre-check-ins holds tremendous appeal. I realize you can do this already on Foursquare by checking-in to places before you arrive, but that seems dishonest in a way that makes me uncomfortable.
Then there’s Ditto! Again, similar to Foursquare but you can also check-in to ideas as well as places. Want to check-in to note you’re watching a movie? More power to you, but I think that’s a little more check-in than I need.
WeReward is my ideal style of check-in app. Getting paid to check-in or perform menial tasks makes the app more like turning my life into one big scavenger hunt. That’s an idea with some serious appeal. I don’t know how well it actually pays out having never used it, but if it pays out at all that’s worth at least a little bit of my time.
Whichever app I end up settling into during this check-in business, I guess it finally won me over. And you know what, I don’t feel bad about that for a second. After all, 1 billion check-ins can’t be wrong.