Gowalla For Android

Gowalla is one of a number of applications for the iPhone, like Yelp and Foursquare, that does location-based social networking. Gowalla uses a crowd-sourcing model that is different than Foursquare and that has allowed it to be used outside the U.S. right away while Foursquare started in the U.S. and has been slowly rolling out to the rest of the world. Up until now Android users who wanted to try out Gowalla had to use a web app, but a beta is now available of a native Android application.

Because it is a beta, Gowalla is not currently in the Android Market. Instead, you have to configure your phone to install applications directly from web sites. To enable this, on your phone select Menu, Settings, Applications, and then check the Unknown Sources checkbox. To download the application to your phone you can scan the QR code with your phone from this page, or enter http://static.gowalla.com/gowalla-android-20100212.apk in the browser.

Gowalla is like Foursquare in that it detects where you are and allows you to check-in and share experiences at locations. In Gowalla you earn pins (which are added to your passport) when you check-in and contribute, just like you earn badges in Foursquare. Amongst the the features that make Gowalla different from Foursquare is that you can create trips by selecting locations on Gowalla’s web site, and the trips are then available on the phone for check-ins, and can be shared with your friends.

The Gowalla Android application is currently pretty rudimentary, only supporting check-ins, displaying the activity of your friends, and your passport. You will find more information about the beta by clicking here. The mobile web version of Gowalla is available at m.gowalla.com.