Foursquare has always shown the number of people checked in at a specific place in its mobile apps and there have been roundabout ways to find it on their website, but until now it hasn’t appeared in the most obvious spot: the venue page. A recent update changes that by showing the number of people currently checked in at the top right of each venue page.
It’s a useful metric that gives you a general idea how busy a place is right now. Of course it’s not precise since many people don’t check in on foursquare, so you’d need to monitor a place regularly to gauge its typical check-in patterns to really have a feel for what a particular number means in terms of crowd levels.
Perhaps even more useful would be another line below that showing something like “Busier than normal for this time of day.” That’s a local search metric Yelp and Google simply can’t match: a real-time status that lets you know whether now is a good or bad time to visit the place you’re searching for.