Foursquare co-founder Dennis Crowley appeared on CNBC, discussing how Foursquare can compete with Facebook.
"They’re a huge platform and a big competitor, but we look at the things we’re doing, and they’re really kind of fundamentally different than what Facebook is doing," he said. "Facebook has really figured out how people share information online and convene online, and what Foursquare’s all about is what happens at the end of the day, when you close the lid on your laptop and you go out in the real world. Those are the experiences in which we’re trying to bring people together around."
"Not so much the end of the day, but a lot of what’s been happening on social media and social networking over the last five or six years…it all happens on your computer," he added. "Now, the majority of people are walking around with smartphones, with GPS, with network connectivity. We think – how do you take all the great things about social media and bring it out into the real world? When the screen is in your pocket and not right in front of your face all the time."
I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but Facebook is mobile too.
Update: Crowley resopnded to this article on Twitter:
@webpronews Per your article, making content available on mobile devices is diff than specifically designing around mobile exp & use cases.
Facebook says on its stats page, "There are more than 200 million active users currently accessing Facebook through their mobile devices. People that use Facebook on their mobile devices are twice as active on Facebook than non-mobile users. There are more than 200 mobile operators in 60 countries working to deploy and promote Facebook mobile products."
"We’re seeing a lot of advertisers and brands flock to Foursquare because we’re doing some of the most interesting stuff with location-based marketing…If you’re a brand, it’s really about taking content from your brand and scattering it all over the world," Crowley said.
60% of Foursquare’s users are in the U.S. Foursquare did launch in five new languages last week, however (Japanese, French, German, Italian, and Spanish). That should certainly help spread its percentage further throughout the world. Crowley said that now the first few languages out there, more will come much easier.
Big day yesterday! In case you missed it, we launched our app in 5 new languages AND had our biggest European check-in day ever!
Since the interview, Foursquare announced its availability on all Nokia Series 40 phones (owned by hundreds of millions of people). That should help too.
Last month, the company put out an interesting infographic about its growth. Last year, Foursquare grew by 3,400% with total check-ins reaching 381,576,305. It has 6 million users.
When the roles played by Facebook and Twitter in the Middle East revolutions were brought up, Crowley said, "We’re still in the early days of Foursquare, and we haven’t seen anything revolutionary happen yet."
Crowley said Foursquare isn’t looking to raise additional capital, having raised 20 million last summer, and is not thinking about going public anytime soon…but maybe "years off in the future".