Such popular location-based services as Foursquare and Gowalla invite people to "check in" at locations using their mobile phones, let their friends know where they are, and collect rewards from businesses in the process. But these apps don't do enough to get people interacting with each other, according to the creators of new location-based services that aim to be much more social—and at least as lucrative.
Though the first-generation services encourage you to connect with friends, you often still end up interacting with the service as an individual, little affected by others' actions, says Dave Bisceglia, cofounder and CEO of The Tap Lab, which plans to show its iPhone game, TapCity, next week at South by Southwest Interactive. SXSW, as it's known, is the annual conference in Austin, Texas, at which Twitter first found an appreciative audience. TapCity will be one of several location-based services launching there this year.