With Fousquare and other LBS providers gobbling up users left and right, it was inevitable that the concept would be replicated for other segments and uses. Enter DeHood, a new LBS startup that replicates Foursquare’s capabilities, but does so on a hyperlocal level and adds subtle local advantages and features to differentiate itself.
The newly launched iPhone app aims to bring together communities, or “hoods,” around local news, places, businesses and more, which then enables real-time interaction between families, friends and neighbors. As the company puts it, it’s the first location-based social network for neighborhoods.”
Direct from the press release; “DeHood helps users discover people, places, events and great offers in their locality, and enables a complete social network for shopping and places. For example, residents can find out what is going on around them before they leave their house, whether it’s a traffic jam, the latest hot spot, the best deal nearby, or a local event to check into. With an accurate check-in function they learn the location of their friends, privately message them, or follow the thoughts of other residents on how to make their ‘hood’ a better place to live.”
The neighborhood-based targeting aspect of DeHood is unique, but I just don’t see what sets this service apart from the dozens of other “location-based social networks” that pop up every day it seems. To me, it falls under the category of being a good idea, but being too late to capitalize on the bulk of the potential.
In this example, Foursquare and Gowalla are the clear leaders. Even if DeHood did everything right, it wouldn’t be enough to overcome what the two pioneers of the concept have built up. When users think of social LBS, Foursquare and Gowalla are the defacto services, it will be a hard hill to climb for anyone to overcome. Still, I could be wrong.