Uber and Foursquare team up to make it easier to find your destination

Https%3a%2f%2fblueprint-api-production.s3.amazonaws.com%2fuploads%2fcard%2fimage%2f97783%2fap_238936285859A Chinese driver shows a picture of car-hailing app Uber on his smartphone in his car in Shanghai, China, 4 April 2016.

Image: dycj – Imaginechina

Uber will soon be a lot better at finding your destination.

The ride hailing company has inked a new deal with Foursquare to use its location information to make Uber’s app better at finding the addresses of specific locations.

Under the new deal, Uber’s app will incorporate Foursquare’s Places data so that riders can find the addresses for exact locations by only typing in the restaurant or venue name. 

“Foursquare will enable Uber to customize, improve and increase the breadth of our non-personal POI [points of interest] location data to enhance Uber’s rider and driver experience,” Foursquare wrote in a blog post. “Also, these modifications will also be incorporated into Foursquare’s venue database going forward.”

Exactly how much the deal is worth is unclear, but Foursquare described it as a “global, multi-year agreement.”

For Uber riders, the new partnership means the app will be a lot better at finding specific locations when you type in business or restaurant names. Right now, the app is able to find addresses for some locations, like airports and some restaurants, but isn’t always able to consistently find relevant addresses when you type in specific venues.

For Foursquare, the deal marks a significant milestone as it shifts to a more data-driven business model. The company, once known for its check-in app of the same name, has significantly changed its strategy over the last two years — first by removing check-ins from its flagship app in favor of a more Yelp-like service and then with a new CEO who has said he wants to refocus the business around Foursquare’s wealth of location data. 

Many developers, including Pinterest, Microsoft and (at one time) Instagram, have leveraged Foursquare’s location data over the years. But the company’s new deal with Uber — one that allows Uber users to tweak Foursquare’s data — proves that a less consumer-focused Foursquare may be more viable after all.  

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