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New Foursquare redesign due to be released

Following days of cryptic Foursquare tweets including the hashtag #allnew4sq, the exploration app announced Saturday that the, well, all new Foursquare is coming "this week".

Though the company reached 1 billion check-ins back in September, Foursquare is reportedly now shifting away from that focus. Foursquare CEO Dennis Crowley told TechCrunch in March that check-ins are no longer the most popular feature on the service.

Crowley said he realised that people were using the app as more of a recommendation service, or to find friends or local things, without checking in anywhere. So, the company is taking advantage of its new user-influenced direction, turning the app from a check-in site to a recommendation engine.

"Put on your fanciest fancy pants", Foursquare tweeted May 30. "The all new Foursquare is coming soon!".

The redesign is expected to boost Foursquare's Maps tool and discovery features, which could be rolled into the website's "Explore" tab, with tips and user-recommendations, TechCrunch said yesterday.

Though Facebook and review-site Yelp added check-in features to their services, Foursquare, the original check-in site, appears to be "moving to be a Yelp 2.0", TechCrunch speculated.

In the past year, Foursquare has added profile-page bios, location detection, restaurant recommendations and a searchable timeline, working toward becoming more of a social network than a vehicle for mayorship of the local grocery store.

The Foursquare smartphone app launched in March 2009 at SXSW, since growing into a global app with more than 20 million users.

Crowley told the Wall Street Journal last month that in July, the company expects to begin letting merchants buy special ad placement among the redesigned app. Users will be able to see the promotions, but must check in to the venue to redeem them, according to Journal.

Keep an eye out for Foursquare's facelift, soon to be the answer to your "What should we do tonight?" question.