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
Regrettably, Zagat To Go '09 for the iPhone and iPod Touch ($9.99 per year) isn't markedly different.
The components to a great mobile app are all there--venerable content, click-to-call, a Web site link, OpenTable reservations for some restaurants, and search and sorting filters--but the whole is somehow less than the sum of its parts.
Stability is a major concern, the app cries for an in-app browser, and Zagat To Go … Read more
Zagat's iPhone debut has all the ingredients for making a great restaurant and nightspot ratings application for the iPhone--venerable content taken straight from the Zagat Survey, a phone number you can tap to initiate a call, a Web site link, OpenTable reservations and photos when available, and filters for searching by category and sorting results by ratings criteria. Yet somehow, the whole is slightly less than the sum of its parts.
This latest version handles GPS data much better than the debut build, a marked improvement. Now if it could just throw in an in-application browser for easily returning … Read more
Curious diners have a new friend in Urbanspoon, a practical dining discovery app that shows a playful side when you let it. Otherwise, it gets to the serious business of finding you food. GPS or various forms of manual input shine a light on the restaurants nearby. While there's also browsing by popularity or neighborhood or searching by name, the most interesting and invigorating feature is the slot machine on the main screen. Enthusiastically shake the iPhone (or press "shake") to set individual wheels in motion. They'll randomly land on a nearby neighborhood, cuisine, and price … Read more
Remember the Restaurant.com deal from a couple weeks ago? Well, it's back! From now until Halloween (aka October 31), you can get a $25 gift certificate for a restaurant in your area for just $2. Just enter coupon code TREATS when you get to the shopping cart.
There are a few conditions, of course, usually in the form of a minimum food or drink purchase. However, it's not as if you have to order a case of wine or anything. And you can print the coupon right on your own printer: It's immediately ready for use. … Read more
BooRah, a service that uses semantic technology to find restaurant reviews online and combine them to give users a rating, announced that it has launched a new API for websites and businesses that want to display the company's reviews on their own sites.
The API allows users to search for restaurants in their city and view the detailed ratings for food, service, and ambiance that have already been generated on BooRah. The API will also give its users the option of displaying links for discounts, menus, and coupons. BooRah hopes users will employ the API's location capabilities to … Read more
Ever tried Restaurant.com? Me neither, but I've heard good things. Basically, you search for a participating fooderie in your area, then buy a gift certificate on the cheap: $3 for a $10 certificate, for example, or $10 for $25.
There are requirements, of course, usually in the form of a minimum food and/or drink purchase. But it's not like you have to order a case of wine or anything. And you can print the coupon right on your own printer: It's immediately ready for use.
To make an already good deal even better, Restaurant.com … 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
Step 1: If you're one the iPhone, let the app use GPS to pinpoint your location. If you're on the iPod Touch, tap the button to enter your city.
Step 2: Vigorously shake the device up and down like you would a blocked-up ketchup bottle. Or simply press the "shake" button.
Step 3: Watch the application's slot machine wheels spin as Urbanspoon settles on a cuisine, price range, and … Read more
While my personal preferences anoint Yelp for iPhone (review) the better service for its broader and more objective listings, Where for iPhone's (coverage) plotting of only partnered services will also have its cluster of followers. The bottom line is this: though serviceable, they both need work. Yelp's developers should hone the accuracy and breadth of this application's listings and stabilize performance against crashes. Where would benefit from letting users customize their choices by selecting … Read more