Have you ever wondered what it would be like if life were more like a game, and that you could get points for going places instead of sitting on your butt all day? I did wonder that, and I was rewarded for my inquiry.
I have recently become addicted to the iPhone app Foursquare. The service is available to users with GPS-enabled mobile devices such as smartphones. Users “check-in” at venues using a mobile website or by running the application and selecting from a list of venues that it finds nearby. Each check-in awards the user points and sometimes “badges”.
My first encounter with “check-ins” came with Facebook’s “Places” addition to its mobile app. It allowed you to share where you were, and even make up funny place names, but not get points for it. Foursquare multiplies that fun.
Now, I know that Foursquare is old (almost two years) and this technology has been around since 2005 (Dodgeball, Google latitude) but as it becomes more mainstream, more of your friends and family will be using it as apposed to hipsters living in New York (where it was created).
The best part of Foursquare that I’ve yet to mention is the mayorships. If you check-in to a certain location enough times you can become the “mayor” of that place. This then allows for a showdown to acquire the mayorship of more popular places. Other perks of the app are the badges that you can earn. Depending on where and how often you check in, you are able to receive badges based on your check-ins.
I find myself committing hours of my day to this game, and I don’t find myself stopping until I become king.