Unless they are also Taylor Swift fans, Urbanspoon users will no longer be able to shake it out. The restaurant app has shut down following its acquisition by Zomato for about $50 million to $60 million.
While its restaurant information and several features will be integrated into Zomato, that does not include Urbanspoon’s shake feature, which showed users a selection of venues based on their current location and was one of the ways Urbanspoon stood out from competing apps.
These include a five-point rating scale (Urbanspoon’s like/dislike system have been turned into “positive” and “negative” votes on user profiles); allowing only one review per person of a restaurant that can be updated to reflect subsequent visits; and logins, which Urbanspoon did not require (Zomato says this is so users can see recommendations from friends and promises not to sell user information).
Purchasing Urbanspoon marked Gurgaon-based Zomato’s entrance into the U.S. When the acquisition was announced in January, Zomato said that the integration of the two apps was expected to increase its web traffic to 80 million visits per month from 35 million. For users, this means that they can now search over one million listings from 10,000 cities in 22 countries.
Sequoia-backed Zomato, which has raised more than $163 million in funding, said the deal marked one of the largest purchases of a U.S.-based consumer Internet company by an Indian startup.
Zomato is now up against a roster of well-established American rivals like Yelp and Foursquare, but the company hopes to stand out with its reviews, which include menu information and other content updated regularly by its employees. Its app and website monetize through native advertising as well as reservation bookings.