Multiple cities have signed on to celebrate “Foursquare Day” on April 16th, but none as prominently as New York City. NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg has declared April 16th “Foursquare Day” in New York City to celebrate the company and its success — but also to attract new startups to the area. “There is no better place than New York City to start a business,” Bloomberg’s office said. “We are the most exciting and most dynamic place on the market, an international capital of the arts, fashion, and finance. With Foursquare leading the way, we look forward to this generation’s innovators and entrepreneurs making their mark on our City in the years to come.” Foursquare was founded in New York City in 2007 by co-founders Dennis Crowley and Naveen Selvadurai, and the company currently keeps its headquarters there. The social network says it has over 8 million users worldwide and adds roughly 35,000 users each day. If you haven’t tried it yet yet, you’re not too late. The latest version launched early last month and added a ton of useful features, including better specials. Oh, and if you’re wondering why Bloomberg chose the 16th specifically, it’s because four squared is 16 (and April is the fourth month). More →
It’s the company’s first, and we’re guessing it won’t be the last. Apple is constructing a pop-up store in Austin, Texas to coincide with the launch of the iPad 2 and the ever-popular SXSW festival, which is taking place over the next week and a half. It’s being reported that Apple has rented out a 5,000 square foot, empty retail location that it will stock with Apple employees and merchandise for conference goers traveling outside of their normal stomping grounds. No word yet on whether VeriFone’s CEO will create a video demonstrating flaws with Apple’s iPod touch EasyPay system, however. More →
After last year’s embarrassment at SXSW, AT&T is going overboard to ensure a similar wireless network meltdown does not happen again this year at the annual technology conference in Austin, Texas. To avoid a second such disaster, AT&T is throwing a ton of cash and bringing in an equal amount of equipment for the SXSW conference including:
- Installing a Distributed Antenna System (DAS) at the Austin Convention Center. The DAS is comprised of 50 antenna nodes that provide the equivalent coverage of eight cell sites.
- Improving the cell sites in the surrounding area by utilizing 30MHz of spectrum for 3G instead of the standard 10MHz and upgrading the system to include the 850MHz band and HSPA.
- Bringing in three temporary cell sites that are positioned in areas expected to see high traffic.
- Improving the backhaul by beefing up the fiber optic connections that serve the eight cell sites of the DAS and the three temporary sites. According to sources within AT&T, the backhaul capacity has seen a fourfold increase.
The stakes are high for AT&T as a network failure could wipe away any gains in consumer confidence AT&T saw following its favorable review from PC World last week. With its reputation on the line, will AT&T and its 3G network rise to the occasion or will it crumble to its knees under the strain of a mob of iPhone-toting geeks? Predictions are welcome in the comments. More →