Online restaurant reservation service OpenTable recently announced its purchase of mobile app Foodspotting, in an effort to create a more social and visual-focused platform.
The Foodspotting app, which allows users to submit and browse pictures of their favorite meals, will continue to run as its own product. Currently, Foodspotting allows users (and foodies) to search for certain types of dishes within a particular city or geographic area.
Users can also log into Foodspotting with their Facebook accounts so they can see what restaurants and dishes their friends like, and then share their favorites with others.
For businesses, Foodspotting offers a number of tools including photo contests, giveaways, and city restaurant guides. Foodspotting is also working on a way for restaurants to claim their own pages so they can have more control over what is displayed.
The photo on the left above shows an OpenTable page that includes reviews, reservation options, and a photo from Foodspotting. The photo on the right shows the same photo on a Foodspotting page, which includes the user name and when the photo was added, along with how many other users have loved the post. Foodies, in particular, will really love this feature.
For restaurant owners, this news could mean the addition of some interactive features on the popular reservation platform. By integrating Foodspotting photos and data, the OpenTable experience could become smarter and a little more personal. Instead of simply going to OpenTable to make a reservation, users could submit photos of their favorite dishes or exchange other information about local restaurants.
OpenTable already had a partnership in place with Foodspotting. The site used some user-submitted photos from the app on its restaurant reservation pages, and Foodspotting users were able to make OpenTable reservations within the app.
OpenTable agreed to purchase Foodspotting for $10 million, and the ten-person team will be joining the team at OpenTable. Foodspotting is based in San Francisco and was originally founded in 2009.