In this part, we will analyze 6 similar existing tools. They are Yowza, MobiQpnons, Coupious Mobile Coupons, Foursquare, Foodspotting and Dishfinders.
|Yowza||MobiQpons||Coupious Mobile Coupons|
Current location ,
|Information filtering||Search radius,||Category,
|User follow certified stores||✔||✔||✔|
|User follow individual user||X||X||X|
|Users rate, comment, feedback||Publish Comments on Facebook or Twitter||X||Publish Comments on Facebook or Twitter|
|Information Sharing Platform||Share Information via Email||Share Information via Email||Share Information via Email|
|Users search||City and Zip Code||Address||Address, City and Zip Code|
|Individual User Publish||X||X||X|
|Certificated stores publish||✔||✔||✔|
|Time Coverage||Ongoing only||Ongoing only||Ongoing only|
|Reminder||X||Reminded by Stores||X|
Table 1: Analysis of Yowza, MobiQpons and Coupious Mobile Coupons.
The service is provided only within USA .The user can find coupons near them and display them digitally on their mobiles as displayed in Figure 1-1, so no printing of the coupon forever showed in Figure 1-4.As displayed in Figure1-1 users can set the search radius and even changing cities or postal code for getting coupons. Moreover, users can add certain stores as their favorites and constantly following them, which is showed in Figure1-2. However, it doesn’t allow communication between the users within its own platform but only through subscribing information to Twitter or Facebook as displayed in Figure1-3.
The service is provided only within USA and features coupons from many retailers. So other places around the world won’t be able to find any coupons offered on it. It seems more like an information displaying platform, less of social elements. Basically, it displays many hyperlocal and in-store coupons. Users can save their favorite stores for a quick way to filter coupons by shopping preferences. Results can also be filtered by distance or business name as showed in Figure2-2. One distinctive feature is that the application provides the option of reminder as showed in Figure 2-3, which is apparently useful for users. As displayed in Figure 2-4,2-5 and 2-6 the user can choose What, When and How to be reminded. They can’t share the information within MobiQpons its own platform but could forward the coupons via email. However, users do need to download the coupons and show them to the cashiers to scan the barcodes as the proof, which is showed in Figure2-1.
Coupious Mobile Coupons:
It is very much similar as MobiQpons. The service is provided only in USA. Users can subscribe the information to Twitter and Facebook. Also, it gives the ongoing coupons in very detailed and even directions for users to follow as showed in Figure 3-1 and Figure 3-3. Moreover, as displayed in Figure 3-2 user generated and manipulated rich text is distinctive. It allows users to order the search result as A-Z, Z-A, Nearest, and Farthest based on the current location, which is showed in Figure 3-4. Besides, users can search coupons by address, city or zip code and the with flexible search radius in many different cities within USA. For example: if I want to find a pizza place near New York City, it will locate the coupons for me in New York within 2-100 mi/km. But the users do need to download the coupons and show them to the cashiers to scan the barcodes as the proof.
|Intention||Social networking||Information-oriented with social elements||Information-Oriented with social elements|
|Information Coverage||Kinds of information||Dish information||Dish information|
|Information Filtering||Following only||Following only,
Current location display,
Chosen city display
|users follow certificated stores||X||✔||X|
|users follow individual users||✔||✔||✔|
|users rate, comment, feedback||Within its own platform||Within its own platform||Within its own platform|
|Information Sharing Platform||Within its own platform, Twitter or Facebook||Within its own platform||Within its own platform|
|users search||Place, People and Tips||Food, restaurant or location||Food, restaurant, city or postal code|
|Individual User Publish||✔||✔||✔|
|Certificated stores publish||X||X||X|
|Time Coverage||Ongoing Information||Ongoing Information||Ongoing Information|
|Reminder||Reminded by Foursquare||X||X|
Table 2: Analysis of Foursquare, Foodspotting and Dishfinders
This application allows registered users to connect with friends and update their location as showed in Figure 4-1. Users can choose to have their check-ins posted on their accounts on Twitter, Facebook or both as showed in Figure 4-6. When a user “checks in” to a venue on Foursquare, if he or she is within 10 check-ins of becoming the mayor, Foursquare alerts the user of the days left before becoming mayor on the check-in confirmation screen. Points are awarded for “checking in” at venues. Users can create a “To Do” list for their private use and add “Tips” to venues that other users can read which serve as suggestions for great things to do, see or eat at the location as displayed in Figure4-2, 4-3, 4-4 and 4-5. The service provides three levels of “Super user status”. Super user status is conferred on users who check in frequently or enter new venue information into Foursquare.
Instead of reviewing restaurants, users can find and share where to find your favorite dishes using photos as showed in Figure5-1. If users are trying to decide what to eat, they can see the nearest, latest and best food around them, or they can search dishes by typing food name or restaurant name or location as displayed in Figure5-2. Besides, to filter dish information, users can choose following only, wanted only or all information, which is displayed in Figure 5-3, 5-4 and 5-5. In turn, as the distinctive feature the application will give expert badges and reputation points for quality contribution. Most importantly, if users want to share recommendations and comments, they can share photos of food they like and tell others where to find them as showed in Figure5-6. These are the social elements that this application is embedded in.
Very similar as Foodspotting, this application puts the social back into restaurant dining noticed by photos submitted, ratings submitted, comments submitted and photo likes received, except functioning as a dish information displayer as showed in Figure6-1,6-2, 6-4 and 6-6. The outstanding feature is that this application has adopted the timeline list to display information just as Facebook done, which is apparently familiar and preferred by users as displayed in Figure6-1. Besides, user can search a food or restaurant by typing a location city or postal code. Search distance can be set into 1, 2, 25, 50km or unlimited, and results are generated by best match or distance, which is showed in Figure 6-5. Moreover, it is easy to switch between maps and timeline lists as showed in Figure 6-3.
In conclusion, those existing tools are lack of social elements or at the least not featured as social networking, except the Foursquare. Therefore, we are going to emphasize the user participation and social function including rating, comments, following and sharing in our application. In other words, our application-DisCap is a hyperlocal discount information sharing social networking in worldwide on iPhone. Moreover, DisCap will inherit the highlighted features in those existing tools such as UGC (User Generated Content), information filtering, user-friendly guidance, multi-media and the expert points as incentive to users. Furthermore, our application covers the ongoing and in the near predictable future discount information. Additionally, as another user-friendly function in Foursquare and MobiQpons, reminder is going to be highlighted in our design. Finally, I am going to discuss the differences between the individual user and the certificated store in Table 3, and that is partial reason why we are going to certificate stores.
|Individual User||Certificated Store|
|Real-time discount information||Succinct,
|Too much and general,
|In advance discount information||Unofficial sources,
After got the discount information
As soon as they have the discount plans
|Benefits and future||Benefited by saving money to get their needs and wants. They may recommend this application to their friends.||Benefited by getting users’ requirements from comments or discussions. They will improve their service to meet users’ needs.|
Table 3: Differences between the individual user and the certificated store