One major complaint about the location-based social network Foursquare is that it’s not in enough cities, and that almost all of those cities are in the U.S. That’s due to change in a small, but meaningful way as Foursquare is planning to launch in London by the end of the week.
Currently, London and Amsterdam (which was previously launched) are specifically the only European cities on Foursquare’s roadmap, but if the London roll out goes well, there will be others in relatively short order, co-founder Dennis Crowley tells us. Not surprisingly, at least one of those is Paris, judging from a tweet sent from the Foursquare Twitter account earlier.
Every time we write about Foursquare, we get a lot of comments and emails wondering when it is coming to your city. Other services such as Gowalla, rely on crowd-sourcing much of the venue population so that they can be available in more cities. But while Foursquare has talked about using that approach more in the past, the company still feels most comfortable pre-populating cities as it wants to make sure it can scale as it grows. When pre-populating a city, Foursquare says that it tries to hit 80% of the places that people are most likely to go — obviously, that takes a lot of work out of the users hands, and instead they can simply “play” the game.
So will London users take to Foursquare? Obviously, that remains to be seen, but it does tend to do well in large metropolitan cities with a good amount of nightlife, as we’ve seen in the U.S. with New York and San Francisco.
Foursquare also looks poised to continue expanding its city base in the U.S. shortly. It would seem that places like Chapel Hill, NC are on the list. Chapel Hill is of course the home to the University of North Carolina, and college towns seem like a natural fit for Foursquare. Get ’em hooked early, as they say.