November 17, 2017

Facebook relaunches Events as a Foursquare-like app called Local

12 November 2017, 12:41 | Edward Lowe

Facebook sets its sights on Yelp with a new app called Local

Facebook relaunches Events as a Foursquare-like app called Local

If you've ever been in an unfamiliar neighborhood wondering where to eat, scoured the internet for the best hair salon, or flip-flopped over whether you wanted to go to that speakeasy downtown, Facebook is proposing a new solution. The app especially highlights locations that have been visited and liked by users' Facebook friends.

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Local's description says it is created to "help you discover places and things to do recommended by friends you know and trust". Apart from notifications for nearby happenings, users will now also get business recommendations from friends and searchable maps. From now on, the app formerly known as Events will now be called Local, and will incorporate information about local businesses and reviews from Facebook users. The database is still lacking, with reviews still not that many, but what Facebook Local offers beyond Yelp and Foursquare is that it expands the search engine to events. But the company in the past has launched dozens of standalone apps that haven't proven to be big hits, but have later found their features adapted for one of Facebook's other apps or products. The old app was used for keeping track of Facebook events users have been invited to, and others in the area they may be interested in, but as The Verge notes, it wasn't particularly successful.

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"Launching in the U.S. on iOS and Android, Facebook "Local" combines events and permanent places to a single search engine powered by Facebook's 70 million business pages plus reviews and friends' checkins", TechCrunch reported late on Friday. That is because most of the information that can be accessed through it is also available on the main Facebook app. The description gives a good idea of why users will want to download Facebook Local, but the app goes much deeper than this.

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