How To Get Notified By Cellphone Text Message When Friends Are Nearby
There’s very few really “good” applications for text messaging other than just sending instant messages back and forth to friends. When I was working for a text messaging content delivery company, we were really racking our brains to find ways that users would practically use text messaging beyond one-to-one communications. Dodgeball seems to be one of them. And it’s only getting better since Google bought Dodgeball out.
Why? Because this is smartmobbing + social networking + mapping all together. I think the correct buzzword phrase is “interactive mobile social network” Basically you “check-in” with the service by sending a text message from your registered cell phone with your location. And then Dodgeball sends a text to your circle of friends that are physically within the same area so that you could meet-up for lunch, drinks, etc.
One cool feature is reviews of the various places listed with the service – coffee shops, restaurants, bars, night clubs, and other venues where people would meet-up. You’ll also then get access to recommendations of other places that might interest you based on the check-in & meet-up history of other Dodgeball users. You can just see the future integration of GoogleMaps and GoogleLocal where you’ll be served up recommendations for immediately available places to visit or patronize (can you see the eventual “sponsored instant coupons” from competing venues within walking distance to your location?). Imagine this scenario. You’re at 6th & 48th. You find out through Dodgeball that your friend happens to be at 6th & 40th. Both find that you’re free for lunch right now, but where to meet? Then you both get a text stating that Dean & Deluca’s in Rockefeller Center would like to ”sponsor” the meet-up with an offer for a free dessert for the 2 of your with purchase of lunch…and they’ll reserve a table for you for the next 10 minutes until you arrive. Win-win-win, no?
Here’s a great application that grows stronger with the network effect — the more people that use it, the more useful it becomes. If a couple of your friends start to use it and like it, it could spread like wildfire amongst your circles of friends, associates, co-workers, etc.
It’s free to register and now available in at least 22 cities in the US right now. Now that you understand the service, do you any connection to what you fondly remember of “dodgeball”? Hmm….