While the popularity of location-based services like Foursquare, Gowalla and many others have been in the spotlight over the last couple years, their popularity with mobile consumers might not match the hype.
According to a recent study conducted by Pew Research, checking in via geosocial services like Foursquare are the least popular activity among smartphone users. While more than half of the smartphone owners in the survey of 2,277 adults report accessing social networks, sending photos and viewing email, just 12% of smartphone owners say they use checkin services. Not surprising, the most popular activity was sending SMS messages.
Granted, the sample size of the survey was small — results were based on a national telephone survey of adults conducted April 26-May 22, 2011. The survey included 1,522 interviews conducted by landline phone and 755 interviews conducted by cell phone. Still, the findings are in line with other similar research that’s come out recently. In November, Pew released survey results showing just 4% of Online adults use location-based services and only 1% use these services on a given day.