Foursquare today launched a redesigned version of the Explore tool on their website. It now more closely mirrors the mobile experience, while adding a few new features like venue ratings.
The redesign features the new search box and a set of filters along the left-hand side of the full-screen experience. Like the mobile version, you can search by a name, a specific thing you’re looking for, or a category.
The filters recreate all the options from the new iOS version with the exception of the places you’ve saved to lists. You can choose from just the places you’ve been or haven’t been, along with the places your friends have been. Filters for “top picks,” “trending” and “sights” make their way to the desktop in this version.
You’ll also find a few of foursquare’s newer features like venue ratings (including color-coded boxes) and likes on the Explore screen. A well-integrated numbering system makes it easier to correlate venues from the list to pins on the map.
One of my favorite “little things” from this version is the ability to click a venue category in the list and be taken immediately to a list of matching venues. If you’re browsing the list and a taco place sounds good, for example, you can search for similar taco places with a single click.
Non-foursquare users can now get a taste of foursquare’s results (minus the personalization) by visiting foursquare.com/explore. This new version also seems to play better with the iPad. Scrolling is smoother and tapping a venue in the list pulls up its pin, as you’d expect.
What do you think of the changes to the Explore screen? How often do you use the desktop version as opposed to the mobile one?