Facebook Deals creates rivals out of Foursquare and Groupon

Facebook DealsRemember back when Facebook was in talks to acquire Foursquare? Now they don’t have to. With the announcement of Facebook Deals today, any mayors and candidacy hopefuls out there might be wondering what this means for Foursquare. Speculation is leaning towards nothing good.

Facebook’s introduction of Places two months ago should have served as a warning sign for Foursquare, but the company denied any sort of unease. Where were the rewards with Places? All Facebook’s location-based application offered was a measly posted update to the mini-feed of where you were. Foursquare had mayors and badges and the occasional coupon. But paired with the newly launched Deals, Foursquare’s got some serious competition.

Like its’ predecessor, Deals is free and simple for vendors to use. As a business, would you rather make a play for Facebook’s 500 million users, or Foursquare’s 4 million? It’s a pretty easy decision. And once a business has created a deal, it’s also shared to all fans of the page, which is better advertising than Foursquare has available.

Foursquare’s “Specials” feature lets businesses reward customers similarly to Deals, but it caters to the site’s social ladder. It advises retailers to “show extra love to your venue’s Mayor!” Deals doesn’t require a game where you unlock anything, or rack up points, or become the metaphoric mayor – all users are privy to all deals, and this is likely going to get it more action.

And for consumers, Deals also offers options when it comes to incentives. A virtual punch card is available, as well as the chance of giving to charity, or to be rewarded for bringing friends.

Despite any ominous premonition, Foursquare has proven itself a successful and innovative business, with a devoted following – and it has been very beneficial for some businesses. CEO and founder Dennis Crowley also revealed at the ad:tech conference today that the site is working away on improvements to the site, included its rewards system, so don’t count it out yet.

But Foursquare isn’t the only potential victim. Popular daily deal site Groupon could also take a hit. In the same press conference as it introduced how easy its’ new mobile app lets users claim Groupon deals, Facebook more or less announced its plans to fiercely compete with the site. Facebook offers its Deals service to retailers for free, and Groupon takes a percentage of what vendors make off its coupons.

Just to solidify its place in the location game, Facebook released the Places API (which used to be read-only). With a few simple lines of code, Facebook is encouraging any and all third-party applications to allow users to link their check-ins on any location-based sites to its’ site. Advantage, Facebook.

Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: 1-handed drone control, a pot that stirs itself

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Movies & TV

The best shows on Netflix, from 'The Haunting of Hill House’ to ‘The Good Place’

Looking for a new show to binge? Lucky for you, we've curated a list of the best shows on Netflix, whether you're a fan of outlandish anime, dramatic period pieces, or shows that leave you questioning what lies beyond.
Product Review

Why get anything bigger? The new Mac Mini is all the desktop you need

Apple’s new Mac Mini doesn’t look much different from its predecessor, and it’s more expensive. Yet the changes under the hood make a case for its consideration as your new Mac. Can this entry-level machine hold its own?
Social Media

Facebook opens pop-up stores at Macy’s, but they’re not selling the Portal

Facebook has opened pop-up stores at multiple Macy's, though they're not selling Facebook's new Portal device. Instead, they're showcasing small businesses and brands that are already popular on Facebook and Instagram.
Gaming

The plug-and-play PC Classic joins the retro console bandwagon

Gaming company Unit-e is creating the PC Classic, a plug-and-play retro console that will come bundled with around 30 of the best DOS games. The system will support gamepads and keyboard setups.
Computing

Is your PC slow? Here's how to restore Windows 10 to factory settings

Computers rarely work as well after they've accumulated files and misconfigured settings. Thankfully, with this guide, you'll be able to restore your PC to its original state by learning how to factory reset Windows.
Computing

Mozilla’s built-in price-tracking extension makes it easy to shop with Firefox

Mozilla has heard those worries about Black Friday shopping, and is now introducing a new set of experimental extensions which aim to make it easier to find the best deals online.
Computing

Best Buy’s pre-Black Friday deal takes $330 off the 2017 Surface Pro bundle

If you don't need the latest Surface Pro, Best Buy has a heavily discounted rendition of the 2017 model available in its pre-Black Friday sale. For just $1,000, you can get the tablet with a Core i5 CPU.
Computing

If you've lost a software key, these handy tools can find it for you

Missing product keys getting you down? We've chosen some of the best software license and product key finders in existence, so you can locate and document your precious keys on your Windows or MacOS machine.
Computing

Buying a laptop on Black Friday? Don't make one of these rookie mistakes

Shopping for a laptop on Black Friday can win you some excellent deals, but you should also avoid making common mistakes. Check out what to avoid when buying a laptop for Black Friday and what danger signs to be wary of.
Computing

The Mac mini's price jump has crept into iMac territory. How do they compare?

Apple announced a long-awaited update to the Mac mini. Thanks to the updated specs and increase in price, it's begun to creep up to the base model iMac. In this guide, we now put up the specs on the newest refreshed Mac mini against the…
Computing

Our favorite Windows apps will help you get the most out of your new PC

Not sure what apps you should be downloading for your newfangled Windows device? Here are the best Windows apps, whether you need something to speed up your machine or access your Netflix queue. Check out our categories and favorite picks.
Computing

Ray tracing not an option until it comes to all graphics cards, says AMD

Although Nvidia already supports the ray tracing feature on its high-end new GeForce Turning series of chips, AMD seemingly hinted it doesn't feel like ray tracing is ready until it comes to all level of graphics cards. 
Computing

Turn your desk into a command center with the best ultrawide monitors

Top of the line ultrawide monitors have the deepest curves, the sharpest colors, and the biggest screens on the market today. You’re going to want one, sooner or later. So why not sooner? These are the best ultrawide monitors you can buy…