Foursquare enjoys surge of popularity
Traffic to Foursquare, the location-sharing social network, has tripled in the last two months, according to Hitwise.
Foursquare, which allows users to connect with friends and share their location, has attracted investment from high-profile backers, including Kevin Rose, founder of Digg, and Jack Dorsey, co-founder of Twitter.
The location-based service incorporates a game-like element, whereby users can "check in" to a location, such as a hotel or restaurant, in order to earn "badges" and become the "mayor" of a certain place. This information can also be shared through social networking sites, such as Twitter and Facebook, widening the profile and reach of Foursquare.
According to Hitwise, US visits to Foursquare increased by 50 per cent between December and January, and were up 200 per cent overall since November. Almost a quarter of all traffic to the Foursquare site came via Google, with Twitter driving 21 per cent of all visits and Facebook responsible for 19 per cent.
Dennis Crowley, founder of Foursquare, said the service had enjoyed a steady increase in the number of users. "Usage growth looks more like a vert ramp than a hockey stick," he told the technology website ReadWriteWeb.
Foursquare, which launched last March, is estimated to have around 350,000 registered users. Initially, the service was only available in 100 cities, including Amsterdam, London, New York and Seoul, but users can now "check in" at any location around the world.
There are Foursquare apps available for the Apple iPhone, handsets running Google Android, Palm's range of webOS-based phones, as well as BlackBerry mobiles.