Hype Cycle



Only strong, differentiated, and innovative firms pass the test of time and success. It is vital for companies to know where are they standing in their cycle to pivot and make changes or die. The hype cycle is a graphical presentation developed and used by American information technology research and advisory firm Gartner for representing the maturity, adoption and social application of specific technologies. The hype cycle provides a graphical and conceptual presentation of the maturity emerging technologies through five phases: Technology trigger, Peak of inflated expectations, Trough of disillusionment, Slope of enlighten, and Plateau of productivity. Where is Foursquare standing in the cycle?


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  1. Technology Trigger

Foursquare experienced a rapid growth since its launch in 2012. There are other apps that dominate the market like Yelp, but they lack freshness of ideas and customization.  The app differentiated from competitors with his personalization and “check-Ins.” Millennials in major cities like San Francisco and New York popularized the app across the country.


2.Peak of Inflated Expectations

Foursquare flourished through a loyal and growing user base and the endorsement of influencers. Even former president Obama installed the app to discover new venues. The creators of the app decide to split the app. Foursquare will abandon its famous check in and will only focus on recommendations and personalization to find the hottest spots in town. Swarm will focus on “checking in” and finding friends nearby. The abrupt change disillusioned some users who did not liked the move.


3.Trough of Disillusionment

The company loses users and suffers from the split. It experiences phases of ups and downs. The company know that they have a good product that needs to improve to attract its target audience. Its competitors do not do that well due to the lack of personalization and allegations of manipulation of reviews.


4.Slope of Enlightenment

The company improves the product with its 8.0 in 2014 after the split with Swarm. The new version improves the user experience.  Even though it cannot regain the initial hype, it is benefited bad reviews from Yelp, its major competitor, about alleged pressure and abuse of business.

5.Plateau of Productivity

The brand has gained popularity and survived its toughest test: the split from Swarm. It has benefitted from its major competitor bad performance. The company has gathered valuable data to deliver a better product. The last couple of years have been stable for the company and the future looks good due to its unique proposition and position in the market.

The Social Media world is wild, only the strongest survive. Foursquare survived tough tests and is looking for a good and challenging future in the jungle of competition and innovation.