TORONTO July 19, 2011
Bubbalon encourages users to find social objects using a map and compass feature that guides them to different places. Users can then give places such as restaurants and attractions a sliding 0 to 100 score that represents their feelings about a particular place or thing. This score is aggregated with all of those from other Bubbalon users, providing a broader group sentiment. Bubbalon works on a granular level, giving users the option to provide their feedback on, for example, specific restaurant dishes or a small section or feature of an attraction.
Version 2.0 replaces the beta version of the app with several key enhancements. The new version includes "karma points," Bubbalon’s rewards system that gives users ribbons, fan badges and other designations for using the app. The user interface was greatly enhanced, with a single click "check it out" button that allows users to quickly repeat their votes "for" or "against" the establishments they frequent repeatedly. A leaderboard function allows users to compare their participation with that of other users, allowing them to both be "followers" or "followed."
An additional version 2.0 functionality is an improved check-in alert integration with Foursquare that allows users to share their sentiments about check-ins. After checking in to a place on Foursquare and then leaving, the Bubbalon user is prompted to share their comments, providing instant feedback for other users. Integration with both Facebook and Twitter allows users to share their ratings with friends and followers. The app also captures check-in locations from Facebook Places and Gowalla.
Once a Bubbalon user selects a business or area as something they like or dislike, the back end of the system will designate it as a local social object for that user. Other Bubbalon users will then see this designation, sparking their interest in the local place.