Today, we’re happy to announce significant improvements to the Localeur iOS experience that continue our mission of making it easier to truly experience local.
In this native update, we’ve increased contextual awareness for new users, increased your ability to organize all your favorite places and also enabled you to better engage your friends to learn about all of their favorite places to eat, drink and play through Localeur.
Localeur content is unique in a number of ways. One of these, and one of the most important, is that all content is provided exclusively from locals. As in, only real locals from that city can recommend any place. And on average, a major percentage of our daily usage of our iOS app are from brand new users. Considering this, we wanted to create some additional context for this audience by adding a few quick onboarding screens that emphasize this unique (and cool) value proposition.
Your “Favorite” lists on Localeur should feel like your local hub, keeping all of your favorite local places organized and available to both you and your network. You’ve told us (and we’ve listened) that you want deeper organization in your Favorite lists. More specifically, that you want to be able note local places that you’ve heard of and want to try. Similar to a “wish list”. To accommodate this, we’ve added some new tools that give you clearer, more consistent controls in the form of two new list features for you to use: “Places To Go” and “Places I’ve Been”. To use these, just tap the Localeur heart on any place and you’ll see a pop-up come up from the bottom of your device. Simply tap the list you want to add it to. Then, once you’ve been there, you can tap the Localeur heart again and add it to your “Places I’ve Been” list. This effectively crosses it off your “Places To Go” hitlist. These lists are available for anyone in your friend network to see, and vice-versa. Now you and your friends can stay up-to-date each others local places that you’ve heard of, want to try and been to.
We’ve also heard that you want to be able to invite your friends to join Localeur. To enable this, we’ve added a few points within this version of the iOS app that allows users to invite their friends via Facebook, Twitter, email and text/iMessage. To do this, you can tap “Invite Friends” from your side navigation or from your Friends List that will take you to an “Invite Friends” landing screen. With this, you can unlock more local insight by inviting your friends to see their favorite local spots.
These updates are available in our 1.1.3 release, available today. Download the app or update to the new version and let us know what you think. We hope you enjoy experiencing local with your friends as much as we do! Stay tuned for more exciting updates in the near future.
Co-Founder & Head of Product
Chief Localeur Joah here and I am proud to introduce one of the newest members of the Localeur family (and a member of my real family), my oldest brother Kahron aka Brother Localeur. He’s traveled the world over from Portland to Portugal, Austin to Abu Dhabi and he recently moved back to Austin after spending nearly a decade living/working in the Middle East. To help him get acclimated to the Localeur lifestyle and help you all get familiar with him, he took a trip to our newest city, Dallas, and shared his experience. Enjoy his words below! js
How Brother Localeur Did 36 Hours in Dallas
Being from Austin, it’s easy to want to compare other places to Austin. Recently, I’ve heard good rumbles about Dallas, completely unrelated to sports. I came away thoroughly impressed. It has its own unique mix of that familiar Texas-sized persona, with pockets of co-op warmth. Dallas isn’t Austin, and that’s just fine. I’ll definitely be back.
One note: wrap your head around the driving situation. It is what it is. It’s a big city. Think bigger and get over it.
The first thing I wanted to do what get out and stretch my legs, and take in a little culture. For all its Texas-sized business dealings and luxury shopping going on, art has long been appreciated in Dallas. Situated in the esteemed Dallas Arts District is the Nasher Sculpture Center, one of the best locales for sculpture art in the country.
You’ll see works from noted heavyweights Picasso and Gauguin, to more contemporary talents, like Dallas native David Bates. It’s complete with a picturesque outdoor sculpture garden. It’s the most fulfilling ten bucks you will spend on art in Texas.
Next – checking into my room at the Belmont Hotel, a retro gem in Oak Cliff. Can you hear everything in the next room? Yep. Does the hotel live up to the mid-century motor inn feel? Absolutely. Get a strong drink in the attached Bar Belmont, and enjoy the nostalgia and views.
After check-in, I drove a few blocks down to Chicken Scratch/Foundry, a laid back combination outside bar slash fried chicken joint. The namesake sandwich absolutely doesn’t disappoint.
One pleasant surprise I found is Lucky Dog Books. This second hand bookstore is more of a library of well-selected works. There are stairs leading up to a nice loft area. The racks of retro magazines are stocked in a modern way.
Another short drive takes you over to the beautiful Bishop Arts District, where I sought out a very specific place – Emporium Pies. Upon arrival, I saw the telltale sign of awesomeness – a line outside the door. I recommend ‘In the Limelight’.
Following that significant piece of pie, I walked a couple blocks down to a curious coffee house, with a Dachshund for a door handle, called Oddfellows. The cappuccino, made on a limited edition La Marzocco Strada espresso machine, hit the spot.
I was told brunch is a ‘thing’ in Dallas. The next morning, I went to Bolsa, a cozy chic modern American restaurant built out of a converted garage. Given the set up and the name brand chefs involved, I maintained a certain expectation, which was fulfilled to the utmost. The Eggs Benedict did something for me.
Before I left town, I had to check out Good Records. Best thing about it, other than the high quality of offering, is the arrangement of music by alphabetical order, and not by genre. Al Green and Arcade Fire are located in the same area. All is right.
Free Press Houston has done it again, folks. The 2014 lineup was released mid-February, and the Internet went all sorts of crazy. This is probably (no, most definitely) the most anticipated event of the year, and it all takes place in the heart of Houston at Eleanor Tinsley Park from May 31-June 1.
So, let’s chat about a few of the headliners, shall we?
Ever heard of The Raconteurs, The Dead Weather, or the ever-so-popular White Stripes? Jack White was one of the masterminds behind each of these bands, so you can bet Houston is elated for a musical genius like him to grace us with his presence. This may be a long shot, but wouldn’t it be rad if Jack White and The Kills (also playing the fest) frontwoman Alison Mosshart performed a number from The Dead Weather? That would be too cool.
I’m particularly excited that South Africa’s Die Antwoord are making their way to Houston for the first time, ever. If you haven’t watched any of the duo’s videos, hop on it. You won’t see another performance like this one for quite some time, let me tell ya.
No doubt the masses will be going gaga over Cage the Elephant and Vampire Weekend – and rightfully so. as both bands cater to the indie-pop lovers of the world. One-man wonder Washed Out will bring what is known as “chillwave” to the fest, and Mariachi el Bronx (the alter ego of punk band The Bronx, who played last year) will get your feet moving before you know it.
Aside from the bigger names, the crew at Free Press Houston does a wonderful job integrating local bands into the fest. Wild Moccasins, Jana Hunter, The Tontons, A Fistful of Soul, and Bagheera are a few of those acts. There’s also a handful of acts hailing from Austin, including Eagle Claw, Driver Friendly, and Shakey Graves (who puts on an awesome one-man show, by the way). Peep the official flyer for a full list of 2014 acts.
While FPSF is certainly no Coachella or SXSW, the fest has made deep waves in Houston since its creation in ‘09. The first year garnered 30,000 attendees, which grew to more than 100,000 festival goers in 2013. Attendance this year is going to be NUTS, so make sure to grab tickets before it sells out (and it will).
Are you planning to attend FPSF this year? If so, Tweet me at @britneyIRL and I’ll help you #experiencelocal while you’re in town.
If you’ve been following us since we launched March 2013, you know we’re fans of great design. Not just in our website and our iPhone app, which recently got praise from the LA Times and Huffington Post, but also in our team apparel. We started with limited-edition tanks and tees with our friends We Are the Process and to celebrate our first birthday during SXSW this year, we introduced snapbacks as well. These are going to some of our biggest contributors and supporters. Join the team and you can get one too!
Thank you for your continued support of Localeur. We’re proud to share the newest and bestest version of the Localeur iPhone app.
We’ve listened to your feedback and made some improvements to make the experience even better for you. Now for the updates:
1. Familiarize yourself with Localeur through a new on-boarding experience. Just so you can, ya know, get to know each other a bit better.
2. Browse through the app more easily with a tightened up navigation to help you experience cities like Austin, Houston, LA, New York and San Francisco.
3. Easily invite friends to Localeur through email, text, Facebook and Twitter. This way, you can see your friends’ favorite local spots.
4. Made bug fixes. Score.
If you enjoy Localeur or have feedback, please shoot us a note or leave a review on the App Store. We appreciate it.
We recently asked one of our New York Localeurs, Dre Hayes (co-founder of The Foundation), what his must-have items for SXSW are – he’s done the festival more times than we can count. Here’s what he had to say.
1. Smartphone A smartphone may be the most essential item you bring with you to SXSW or anywhere else. Whether it is to access the Localeur SXSW guide, upload notable moments to Instagram, or use Google Maps to get around Austin, it is an important tool to stay connected to the people and places around you.
2. Comfortable shoes A festival is NOT the place for heels or shoes you can’t stand in for long periods of time. At SXSW, you have to anticipate that there will be tons of walking from attraction to attraction. A comfortable pair of shoes are a basic necessity to get you through each day.
3. Backpack or day bag You will definitely need a place to stash all of your belongings while you are roaming around SXSW. A bag that can hold a lot of stuff is ideal so that you can keep close those extra layers of clothing, sunscreen, a bottle of water, and whatever else you may need from morning to night. (I prefer a backpack because it keeps my hands free to take pictures, hold a drink, or just put my hands up with the crowd). As with everything else you bring, choose a bag you don’t mind getting dirty or damaged.
4. Mini umbrella Weather is the most unpredictable factor in any city, so it is imperative to plan ahead and bring a mini umbrella just in case. The worst thing would be to walk around soggy or drenched.
5. Mophi The Mophi Powerstation is something I never leave the house with, especially when I know I will be on the move all day. This little block provides reliable on-the-go power that is capable of charging virtually any USB device, meaning you can charge your iPhone and your friend’s Samsung Galaxy. Unlike rechargeable cases, the Powerstation provides power that can be shared communally – perfect for SXSW.
We know everyone is super excited for #sxsw this week and we are too! That said, there’s probably no better day than today to announce the next city we’ll be launching on Localeur: Dallas! It’s obviously one of the largest cities in the country, but it’s also home to plenty of great drinking, eating and shopping destinations not to mention one of America’s best sports towns. Stay tuned for more info on our upcoming Dallas launch!
Join us at Whisler’s at 1816 E. 6th Street on Friday, March 7 from 10pm to midnight and kickoff SXSW the right way. The local way.
After my writeup on Huffington Post about How to Experience SXSW Like a Local, I got a flood of questions from out-of-town friends about how important a badge is during SXSW. Do you need one? Does a platinum badge get you a lot more than a Music or Interactive badge? Can you still see some of the tech talks or music showcases without a badge?
No matter how innovative Fast Company deems SXSW (#12 on their recent “50 Most Innovative Companies” list), the Austin conference is not building electric cars, curing cancer or creating a new way for musicians to share their music. Ultimately, SXSW is in the business of selling conference badges. That means the more badges they sell, the more money they make. So don’t rely on anyone officially associated with SXSW to tell you how much value you can get by not paying SXSW; you won’t get an honest answer.
So here are five differences between doing SXSW with a badge versus without one:
1. If you’re a panel speaker, you’re attending SXSW to represent your brand, company or self professionally, which means you’re on the job. If you paid for a badge (or your employer did), you’re also on the clock. This means your top priority is making sure you justified the expense of the hotel and flight (not to mention the badge) and time away from the office.
As a result, you’re going to spend about 90 percent of your time within the 10 to 12 block radius of the Austin Convention Center and Sixth Street District. There’s nothing wrong with that, but it means you aren’t going to be experiencing much of what Austin has to offer outside of Downtown. And Austin’s Downtown core is pale in comparison to those in cities like Chicago or New York so don’t expect to stumble into the best art museum west of the Mississippi or have the meal of your life.
On the other hand, if you don’t have a badge, the entire city is your oyster. Localeur is your best resource for experiencing everything the city has to offer during and away from SXSW.
2. No, you aren’t going to see a single keynote speaker. If you think you’re going to see and hear from star astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson or Girls writer/director/star Lena Dunham, think again. You better have some major hookups with the powers that be at SXSW who can walk you directly into Exhibit Hall 5 if you’re looking to see one of the headliner speakers.
3. The same goes for the headlining Music fest acts. The chances of seeing Bruce Springsteen, Jay-Z, Prince, Metallica or Justin Timberlake in recent years has been slim-to-none even for SXSW badge holders so it’s almost a nonstarter to think you’re getting into the deluxe venues like ACL Live at the Moody Theater sans badge.
4. Networking is easier, but it’s also harder. With a SXSW badge, you can get right in the middle of the action for network purposes at the convention center or the tradeshows. That’s the good news. Bad news is you’re in the middle of the action so it’s sometimes hard to choose between seeing so-and-so speaker versus walking a few blocks to a nearby hotel to meetup with that fellow developer or designer you’ve been in touch with via Twitter.
Without a badge, you have far less opportunities to see talks and participate in speaker sessions so networking during Interactive or seeing free shows during Music can easily become your top priority so the few blocks walk is just another reason to enjoy Austin weather and stop by for a taco or beer nearby.
5. Nightlife versus daytime action. With a SXSW badge, you’ve got to get at least four hours of value out of the daytime hours. Going to a couple of nighttime parties or music showcases simply isn’t enough value for the amount you (or your company) paid if you ask me.
Without a badge, you’re free to sleep in, get a late lunch, hang out with friends who’ve also flown in from other cities (or those living in Austin) and then make the most of the free activities at night, of which there are plenty since SXSW knows the 55,000 or so badge holder number aren’t enough to sell mega sponsorship to companies like Miller Lite. No, those companies pay hundreds of thousands of dollars for the 200,000-plus people who’ve come to SXSW for the creative energy, music discovery, parties and rumors of free beer and delicious tacos.
Final note: I did the no-badge thing in my college years while attending the University of Texas at Austin and also during my mid-20s. Now that I’ve spent the last several years more directly involved in SXSW both in fashion (as the creator of Style X) and tech, I can no longer do SXSW without a badge. SXSW is a learning and networking opportunity unlike any other in the world for creatives and entrepreneurs so I’d recommend you commandeer a badge if you can. If not, party during the day and remember there’s always plenty networking wherever there’s free beer.
- Joah aka Chief Localeur