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Yahoo Acquires The Foursquare-Like Koprol
Yahoo announced that it has acquired an Indonesian site called Koprol. Think of it as a kind of cross between Twitter and Foursquare, with more emphasis on the latter. (Yahoo had been rumored to be in talks to buy Foursquare. This move may reflect its inability to close that deal.) It touches local, mobile and social — but it’s mostly about mobile.
Here’s how Yahoo describes Koprol:
Koprol allows people to connect and share photos, reviews and additional information about locations in real-time using just their mobile phone browser, making the service accessible to a larger percentage of mobile users. Once on Koprol, people can “check-in” to their current location and see where others are and what they are doing. The service helps people find local businesses, such as popular shops or restaurants, based on user ratings including a “thumbs-up” feature to elevate favorite places to the top of the ranking. Users can also start or join discussions based on particular locations and invite friends to participate, creating a unique city-based social mobile community resource.
Given that almost no one in the West knows or uses the site it’s much more of a platform acquisition for Yahoo. It may also be focused on global or developing markets where Foursquare and comparable services don’t have any presence.
One of the Koprol blog posts indicates that the site has begun to work with larger advertisers/brands. Yahoo may have some interesting ideas about how its brand advertisers might utilize the service (a la Foursquare and Bravo) as well.