Version Reviewed: 1.1
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 4
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The Fondu interface is immediately reminiscent of a slightly more involved Instagram. This is a great starting point for an app focused on encouraging people to share short restaurant reviews with their friends. It's easy to learn and just as quick to enter information. Convenience makes it much more likely to be used regularly, and the integration with Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare makes it all the more welcoming.
The app, like a lot of this ilk, won't be much use for anyone living in the countryside but for those who live in or near cities, it's a great way of crowd sourcing local knowledge of the best places to eat.
Signing up is very quick and minimal. It's possible to review a restaurant within a minute or so of loading the app. Fondu covers things like the location and address, with the user focusing on entering what they thought of the place, a score out of four and a photo if they so wish.
This then all transfers to the Discover section, offering a quick overview of nearby places that have been reviewed. Google Maps integration makes it simple to see where the place is, plus how far away it is. Users who want to follow friends or people of similar culinary interests can search around and easily follow them, much like with Instagram.
Once the user's chosen a few people to follow, everything shows up in the Feed section (again like the photo sharing app) making it an attractive and quick way of checking out possible places to eat at. Users can 'cheer' or comment on a review as well as bookmark for future reference. The social functions are pretty well rounded with the aforementioned ability to publish to all the major social networks, as well as find friends via these networks. Everything is laid out in an attractive and easy to use way, thanks to an appealing interface.
As a fan of visiting good restaurants, Fondu is the kind of app I plan on using regularly and recommending others do. Nothing beats personal experience for learning about a new place to eat. Fondu makes it simple and attractive to do so, meaning it has all the hallmarks of an app that deserves to become extremely popular in the near future.