Apps like Yelp and Urbanspoon are certainly good at identifying restaurants within a walking or driving overall range, but don’t offer much in the way of a tailored suggestion experience.
I’ve used the apps before to much frustration because while they do turn up establishments, it doesn’t really help me to know there is a Chuck E. Cheese nearby when I have a date. (Or ever.) Then again, maybe finding a Friendly’s or Applebee’s would be a lifesaver for you, because you don’t dig on sushi or have a bit of a fetish for Screaming Mozzarella Screamers.
SpotOn takes the restaurant finding app function a step further, by integrating with your Foursquare and Facebook to figure out where you tend to go and what stuff you tend to get up to:
We start by learning about you from the networks you’re already a part of like Facebook and foursquare. We use this information to give you personalized recommendations for restaurants, bars, and coffee shops, in a similar way that Netflix gives recommendations for movies. When you’re deciding on a place to go, we try to help you out by presenting you with actionable triggers (for ex: “5 of your friends have rated this bar highly”, “3 of your friends have saved it”, etc).
Then it makes ostensibly better suggestions, eliminating the need to sort through an endless list:
We find that it’s easier to make a decision by focusing on one or two pieces of compelling information, instead of trying to deal with reading endless reviews or processing a lot of information. After you go to a place, you can rate it on SpotOn and share it with your friends.
The app, it should be noted, does not work on older iPhones- so if you haven’t upgraded yet, you’re out of luck. (But we’ve added some screenshots below so you can get a good look at it.) Have you given SpotOn a test run? What do you think?