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Chewsy, creator of a mobile app that lets you review restaurant dishes, launched version 2.0 of its app today, bringing with it support for photos and an easy way to find nearby food.
The first version of Chewsy, which launched in December, let you quickly rate specific dishes at restaurants on a five-spoon scale. Think of it as a more finely tuned version of Yelp, specifically focused on meals. But the developers quickly realized something was missing in its initial release — while people love writing reviews of their food, sometimes the best way to describe a meal is with a picture.
So with the latest version of the app, available now for free on the iTunes App Store, Chewsy focused on making photos a natural part of its review process. Chewsy now supports drafts for reviews, allowing you to take a picture of a meal before you dig into it, and then later write down your thoughts. The developers also streamlined the reviewing experience, moving the entire process into a single page that’s designed to match your dining experience. You can also easily add photos to previous reviews.
There’s also a new section to Chewsy called “Nearby Food”, which, you guessed it, points out places near your location where you can eat. It’s a feature that furthers Chewsy’s focus on “location enhancement.”
Compared to Foodspotting, another food review app, Chewsy is more focused on the details, according to CEO and cofounder Chaitanya Sareen. Foodspotting lets you “nom” a picture of a dish if you like it, but it doesn’t have any way for users to rate something negatively. With its 5-point scale, Chewsy can offer users more useful information about meals.
Browsing around my Brooklyn neighborhood on Chewsy, there are definitely not as many reviews as on Yelp. That’s a given, since the app is so new, and I’m sure I’d see many more options if I was standing in the middle of Manhattan. The company launched Chewsy in 11 markets in December, and in January it reported that Vancouver-area residents left around 1,200 reviews.
Seattle-based Chewsy was founded by Sareen and other Microsoft employees working in their spare time. We’re still awaiting funding details from the company.
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