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At the CN/Drop.io party last week I met Jesse Boyes. Jesse is the co-founder of a relatively new startup in NYC named Outalot. Outalot is a local search engine that’s quick in and quick out. There are four content areas within Outalot: food, bars, movies and shops. Outalot is currently available in NYC and in San Francisco.
I did some tests on the food section and it found the locations I was thinking of – I tested in Brooklyn, Queens and the Bronx. I found the movie listings to be easy as well. There’s a mobile version for finding places while you are on-the-go. You can save places you like as bookmarks within the Outalot service and also see your friend’s bookmarks. There is also a new mapplet which you can add to the normal Google Maps which adds an Outalot layer for additional functionality when browsing a local map.
This month they added Twitter functionality. If you find a location you plan on visiting, you can send a message to your Twitter friends letting them know where you will be heading to.
I guess what I don’t get is why they didn’t tie into Yelp or another reviews site for the locations? Also, what about showing the menus for the food establishments? It’s great to find a restaurant but without reviews and/or menus, it’s only halfway there. If they integrated more content, the site would feel more robust and not just a fancy yellow pages. The usability does seem a bit better than Menupages. What about directions? They are using Google Maps for integration but there’s no link to get directions.
I want to like the service but there’s just so much missing that I don’t get why I’d use this over Yelp?