If you're not the type of person not to say 'no' to discounts, then Cellfire's mobile coupons application could potentially preserve your savings. The deals include local restaurants and retail services in the U.S., as well as national chains. Users can also save coupons for later use and participate in Cellfire's new program for cornering additional coupons by texting a keyword to 22888, Cellfire's short code. Unfortunately, Cellfire isn't always useful if your shopping habits don't mirror the offerings. Yet it's a broad enough service for us to lament that it hasn'… Read more
GPS vendor TomTom announced Thursday that it has launched an online mapping solution to compete with MapQuest and Google Maps. Dubbed TomTom Route Planner, the free service provides door-to-door route planning options to any address in the U.S. or Canada.
Using TomTom's MapShare technology, the service provides users with continued map improvements made by TomTom users that see flaws and correct them. According to the company, improvements are uploaded regularly to provide up-to-date driving conditions. TomTom's IQ Routes feature will offer more accurate arrival estimates by accessing average speeds for each road instead of employing posted speed … Read more
The Weather Channel is a free weather-monitoring application that provides many more features than Apple's built-in Weather app. You can find paid weather applications that are more specialized, but The Weather Channel (sponsored by the eponymous cable channel) offers a lot, including forecasts (hourly, 36-hour, and 10-day), quick access to Weather Channel local and regional video forecasts, severe weather alerts, and a dynamic map (which you can use to see everything from rainfall to "feels like" temperatures and the UV index). You can also set favorites and go back to recent locations which makes The Weather Channel … Read more
Local.com, a search site that helps people find places in and information about their community, said Thursday it will start integrating local video ads throughout the company's site in an attempt to increase ad relevance and revenue.
According to the company, it has inked a deal with Jivox, an online video advertising company catering to local businesses, to use its geo-targeted ads for now. Local.com hopes to sell its own local video ad units through its own list of advertisers at some point in the future.
"We believe that video advertising provides consumers with relevant, timely … Read more
You might remember Gigoit, a service we covered early last year. Much like Freecycle it's set up to let you get rid of, and browse through other people's, junk. The site is littered with things like old lawn mowers, television sets, and anything else that was once useful and is now taking up space.
Up until now the only way to get the directory was to go through the site or use the service's Facebook app; however, there's a new iPhone app called LocalReuse that lets you see which of these items is nearby based on … Read more
MapQuest will begin showing business reviews from start-up Yelp on Thursday, part of a plan to expand from just a mapping site into a go-to hub of local information.
Through the deal with Yelp, MapQuest will get better locally specific content, and Yelp will get more Web site traffic from beyond tech-savvy places such as Silicon Valley that currently are familiar with the site, said Christian Dwyer, MapQuest's senior vice president and general manager.
AT&T has made a strategic investment in Zvents, a site that lets people search for local events and that delivers ads along with the results.
"The AT&T investment supports the ongoing development of Zvents' search platform and unique local-advertising opportunity," Zvents said in a statement. The companies didn't disclose the size of AT&T's investment.
Zvents lets people and businesses promote events, restaurants, and special deals, and the technology is used in a Yellowpages.com application called YPmobile for Apple iPhones, the company said.
Update at 9:10 a.m. PDT: … Read more
A press release describes Digital City, which gets its name from a very vintage AOL brand, as "a new approach to geo-blogging by showcasing original content with a local slant, but global appeal." In other words, it's stuff about nightclubs in Vegas, concerts in Portland, and New York vs. Boston rivalries that are written so that you don't have … Read more
In this day and age when every other person is a self-described foodie, finding the best mobile application to point you to a taste bud-bending experience requires as much discernment as finding the authentic voice from among throngs of folks who think they know good eats.
I'd be lying if I didn't claim snobby epicurean tendencies, myself.
This headstrong belief in one's own taste credentials is exactly what fuels the need for informative and well-designed food-finding applications. Too simple and a foodie will shun it. Too esoteric and it could alienate a growing segment of people who really care about the art and science of meal-making.
I've recently studied several restaurant-recommending applications for iPhone and other mobile platforms, including Yelp and Urbanspoon for iPhone and Zagat To Go for Windows Mobile, Palm, and BlackBerry, and wondered how relative newcomers Munch ($0.99) and LocalEats ($0.99) compare to these more established services.
There are, of course, things to laud and criticize with each app. Munch's interface has a great method for quick-launching searches for pizza, Mexican, and so on from icons in the screen navigation. You can select other cuisines from a scrolling list. Munch returns wonderfully accurate search results, but is devoid of context. There are no reviews, no Web site listings, and every restaurant we looked at was rated with five empty stars. That's doable if you want a listings app, but for anyone trying to make intelligent choices, it just won't work.
LocalEats fares much better. The app brings you the best 100 (or more) restaurants in 50 U.S. cities as determined by a team of foodie professionals, authors of the online dining guide Where the locals eat. The benefit is that unlike Urbanspoon, no national chain even thinks of making an appearance. You can search each city's highest-rated establishments by alphabetical order, cuisine type, or the best of each category. For larger cities you can also search by neighborhood.… Read more
There's no shortage of local search applications for cell phone users to rely on. In addition to Google Maps Mobile, Yahoo OneSearch (which is also bundled into Yahoo Go), and TellMe's BlackBerry app, is newcomer FreeMobile411, a simple, clean-looking WAP app that searches local business and residential listings for people, business names, and business types. While the publisher, V-Enable, works on distributing a more robust client through cell phone carriers starting with Sprint, FreeMobile411.com remains as reliable a lookup for people on low-end Internet phones as it is on high-end phones.