Foursquare introduced Marsbot for iOS a few months ago: Marsbot not only answers your questions about restaurants, but it tracks where you eat and gives you recommendations even before you ask. Well, this chatbot – although Foursquare insists that it’s not – is now available for Android users.
Ever since the introduction of Siri, companies have been rushing to get their own version of chatbot on the market. From Samsung’s S-Voice all the way back when the Galaxy SIII launched to Google’s latest Assistant, letting users converse with a virtual assistant seems to be the latest fad in the world of technology. And Foursquare is no exception.
Similar to Yelp, Foursquare gives you an overview of where to go out to eat, drink, shop, or visit with pictures and user reviews. The company introduced its Siri-like assistant Marsbot back in May for iOS users, and now the app is available through the Play Store.
What’s interesting about the app is that everything is done through the most ubiquitous and simple mode of communication: text messages. After you install the app, it will ask you for your phone number – unfortunately, it seems like you are required to have a US number to use the app for the moment. And as soon as you enter your number, you will receive a text message from Marsbot.
What’s interesting about the app is that everything is done through the most ubiquitous and simple mode of communication: text messages.
Once you have everything set up, the Marsbot app itself runs in the background, and you don’t actually need to open up the app unless you want to enable the vegetarian option. Marsbot basically tracks what kinds of restaurants you frequent, and gives you recommendations based on that data through the SMS thread it started when you signed up. You can also ask Marsbot for suggestions simply by sending it a text. It’s pretty neat, if you ask me.
Foursquare does mention that the app is in its early stages and availability might be limited to certain areas in the US. If you are curious to give it a go, however, click the link below! Just FYI, according to the company, users in NYC and SF will get first dibs, but it seems to be working fine for me here in New Hampshire.