Foursquare is in talks with Google, Yahoo and Microsoft about deals involving the service’s location-based check-in data, founder and CEO Dennis Crowley told The Telegraph in an interview, saying the company’s data “generates hugely interesting trends which would enrich search.” None of the major search providers has confirmed any discussions with the startup, but such deals would make sense given all three players’ interest in making their search results more real-time. All have signed similar arrangements with Twitter for its real-time data feed.
Crowley said that Foursquare’s check-in data could be used to show what locations are trending at a particular time, in much the same way that Twitter results show what keywords are popular on the service. “Twitter helped the world and the search engines know what people are talking about. Foursquare would allow people to search for the types of place people are going to – and where is trending – not what,” the Foursquare founder told The Telegraph. Twitter also recently added a location-based feature called Places, which aggregates messages about specific locations.
Foursquare — which recently crossed the 2-million-user mark — last month landed a $20 million Series B financing led by Andreessen Horowitz, and said that it will be using the money in part to finance an expansion of the company’s service into new areas, as well as a re-engineering of some of the social game-play involved. Foursquare is also expected to be involved in the eventual roll-out of Facebook’s location-based features, which could tie together many of the existing location services such as Foursquare, Gowalla and Loopt.
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