Foursquare Swarm: Check-in App

Last modified
Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Description of App

Swarm turns every day into a game! Earn prizes and compete with friends based on the places you go. See when your friends are hanging out nearby, so you
never miss out on the fun!

• Check in to earn prizes, and compete with friends to see who’s having the best week on the leaderboard. Finish near the top to earn sweet bonuses!
• Think you’re a local? Then try to earn the title of “Mayor” at your favorite spots. But be careful, others will be coming for your crown.
• Keep track of where you’ve been and who you’ve hung out with. After you check in we’ll show you interesting little insights like: “That’s 5 weeks in
a row at bars!” or “That’s your 25th time hanging out with Courtney!”
• Want to meet up with friends? Just open Swarm to see who’s hanging out nearby. Have a better idea? Quickly message your friends to make plans and meet

* A note on battery. We’ve spent years developing the location technology that powers Swarm, making it extremely power efficient. But, as with all apps
of this type, continued use of GPS running in the background can dramatically decrease battery life.



Free or Paid


Apple Watch Support


iOS Version


Device(s) App Was Tested On


Accessibility Comments

This app seems a bit clumsy but it has the groundwork to become as good as Foursquare on the next update. Voice over does pretty well, nothing a few labels won't fix, the interface isn't fantastic as of yet.

VoiceOver Performance

VoiceOver reads most page elements.

Button Labeling

Most buttons are clearly labeled.


There are some minor accessibility issues with this app, but they are easy to deal with.

Other Comments

Swarm allows you to find near by friends to meet up. You can comment on other's activities, as well as post, like, and share what you're doing. You have complete control, and since it works with Foursquare you can check in, that much faster. It recognizes your name when you log in, so that part was easy, after accepting notifications, I could flick around and read where my friends where what time, However the app constantly refreshes, and it makes it hard to stay in one spot. Also there are four unlabeled tabs, one through four, I could only get to them by swiping around the screen, they weren't on the top or bottom as you'd expect. I'm not sold this app is down in the water just yet, I know this is the first release. since it's made by the devs of foursquare i hope they impliment changes soon.

Developer's Twitter Username



1 people have recommended this app

Most recently recommended by DeamonDavid 7 years 4 months ago



Submitted by KE7ZUM on Thursday, May 15, 2014

I am going to be in the process of contacting 4square support about this. I think I got the email right. If not you can tweet them
regarding this matter. I did a last minute demo on the app how ever I was asked to do this by a friend. here it is. I hope this helps somewhat.

Submitted by KE7ZUM on Friday, May 16, 2014

Hello to all. I and some others have gotten a response from 4sq support. I gave them a link to my demo and told them about what was going on. They passed the demo and documentation on to their dev team. I can't way when we'll see a fix, but that response wasfast as always withthem. HOPe that update is some encouragement. I want to do a tffp podcast on sworm, but not when it's like this.

Submitted by Misty Dawn on Tuesday, July 8, 2014

I know a few people here have commented that they've contacted Foursquare Support, but the link that is provided in the comments is NOT a direct link to be able to contact them.

Since it is often difficult to find a place to contact support on web sites, I was wondering if someone could please provide me with a direct link where I can contact Swarm/Foursquare Support about their major accessibility issues.

Submitted by Misty Dawn on Tuesday, July 8, 2014

One major concern I have about this app is that, by default, it appears to make your location available to Swarm/Foursquare friends at all times. The way that sighted users can turn that off is to "swipe across" the profile picture. There does not seem, however, to be a way for VoiceOver users to accomplish the same task accessibly with VoiceOver.

Has anyone yet found any work-arounds for this? If not, this should be a huge concern for all of us, especially those who are concerned about privacy.

Submitted by AnonyMouse on Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Member of the AppleVis Editorial Team

The tabs along the bottom row is a bit odd to use. As you will have to use your fingers to touch across the bottom to find out what the tabs are for. Some reason you can't just simply swipe or flick to the left and right through the tabs. It is good to see that most of the tabs and buttons are now labeled for the most part. There are a few unable buttons to be found but they are very few to be found.

What's New in Version 1.0.6
Thanks for all your feedback so far. We're building your requests as fast as we can. New in this version:

- More mayor: in each and every check-in, you can now see a leaderboard of your friends that shows who has been there the most, and who is the mayor amongst
your friends.
- Easier sharing: you've asked for an easier way to send check-ins to Facebook and Twitter. This update has them.
- Better check-ins: we made a bunch of improvements on the backend, so check-ins should be faster and more accurate.
- More about the place you're at: now, when you check in, you'll see a couple great place photos of the place you're at.

Thanks for using Swarm. Keep sending your ideas to We have a lot more improvements coming your way!

Submitted by KE7ZUM on Tuesday, July 8, 2014

In reply to by AnonyMouse

I like the fact that check Ins are easier to do I plan on doing a What's new audio boo for the swarm team. Plus updating my accessibility usability memo I sent them a month ago. Hopefully I can trim it down to 2 pages rather then 4 like it was before.

Submitted by Siobhan on Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Hi all. The most recnt update finally labeled the tabs. They are, list, grid, plans, and notifications. The check in button is right after the letters, the post and tweet buttons are at the top. To make sure you posted, it will say posting or tweeting after you push the corresponding button.

Submitted by changedheart421 on Thursday, July 24, 2014

I seem to get stuck in a loop when using this new application. Can someone help? When I open it, how can I search for where I want to check in. i just don't see this anywhere.

Submitted by Siobhan on Thursday, July 24, 2014

Hi. The easiest way is to open Foursquare, click check in. Then you'll hear "Sawrm" then "Button." Once you do touch somewhere on the screen swipe around, then double tap, my house, or whatever place you want. Then above the keyboard is check in. Click, then after that at the very top you hear post, tweet buttons, tapping these will say posting, tweeting. You're good.

Submitted by KE7ZUM on Thursday, July 24, 2014

Actually there's an easier way.

  1. launch swarm.
  2. tap check in on the upper right.
  3. make sure yoru location is right by touching the top oart of the the screen.
  4. tap check in right above p.
  5. tap tweet or post. Those you have to flick to but over all I can check in in about 15 seconds.

Take care.

Submitted by MarkSARCH on Tuesday, July 29, 2014

July 28/ 2014
I haven't play allot on the app, so I understand who has some accessibility issues and I don't know if fix some with the update
on this moment all the rest works good voiceover read most of the screen just exeption of some bottons.
some improvements is faster location service.
What's New in Version 1.0.7
Thanks again for all your feedback; we're updating the app as fast as we can. In
this version, we have:
- Spent a ton of time improving location in the app. You'll notice getting locations
is faster and more accurate.
- Moved your profile to the navigation bar at the bottom, so you can quickly tap
and take a look at your past check-ins (and a bunch of other stuff). Notifications
are tucked comfortably in your profile.
- Made it way easier to add a photo to your check-in. Tap the photo icon when you're
checking in to try it out.
- And made it even easier to share your check-ins to Facebook and Twitter.
Keep sending your thoughts to!

Submitted by brandon armstrong on Wednesday, July 30, 2014

hi all, I just got this app, how do i check in with this app? I've gotten the check in screen to come up once with a list of places, but i can't figure out for the life of me how to check in. could someone please explain how to do this? Brandon

Submitted by Raul on Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Does anyone know how these stickers work?
Also, when you are on the checkin screen places aren't shorted by distance.

Submitted by Michael on Wednesday, July 30, 2014

One of the issues I'm having with this app and Checkie is that when I check in, they're not being picked up by either Twitter or Facebook, even though my apps show that the accounts are connected. Has anyone found a way to get these to work? My regular Foursquare app worked fine and did post to both services.

Submitted by Michael on Wednesday, July 30, 2014

No wonder my tweets and posts aren't going through. Thanks for the help. Hopefully, we'll all get this figured out, and why the big change was necessary in the first place.

Submitted by changedheart421 on Thursday, July 31, 2014

To the 2 people that responded right below me I know how to check in. What am trying to do is find a place. For example, in the old application at the top once you hit check in was search. If a place you know you are close to was not in the list you could search for it. At times in this new one, things don't pop up where I am but I know they exist. Sorry if this is confusing.

Submitted by MarkSARCH on Thursday, July 31, 2014

Hi I would try to describe to you how to search a place.
according to your post you know already how to check in but any way I will give all the steps since launch the Swarm app
1 after launch the app in the main screen there are some unlabeled button to the left side of check in,
I will tell how many unlabeled buttons are to evite get confuse.
2 hit on the check in button
3 in this new screen will bring up some edit fiel, how ever go to the top of the screen,
swarm will show up the current location and just below is some line that say
change location
NOTE; this line for some reason voiceover doesn't announce as button
hit in this line
4 after hit on the change location will bring a new screen
where you are able to see the list of places
starting with some unlabeled buttons,
in total are 2 unlabeled buttons.
5 starting from top to bottom
the first is the back button / in other words back to the previous screen
6 the second unlabeled button next to select a place.
is the search button.
7 type the place and hit on the list of places
8 hit the check in button
ready I hope this worth for you.

Submitted by Usman on Sunday, August 17, 2014

After I check in, it brings up a window with comments people had made about the venue and even adds for that venue. I do not know how to bet passed this window as there is no close or next button anywhere that I can see. When I try double tapping anywhere on the screen, it launches the 4square app. Anyone know how to get passed this window?

Submitted by KE7ZUM on Sunday, August 17, 2014

Hmm. I don't have that issue at all. Mine just goes away.

There syoudl be a button in the left corner where a back button shoudl be though.

take care.

Submitted by Toonhead on Monday, August 18, 2014

I was out yesterday and checked into a few places, an I also noticed the lack of a back or close buttons after a checkin. The only way around this that I know of is to close the app and re-open it. I also find sometimes that you have to double-tap on a place twice. Swarm is usually smart enough to tell where you are so sometimes double-tapping on that will allow you to check in, but if it's not, you have to double-tap on select a place, and then scrole through the places nearby til you find the one you want to check into. This probably sounds more confusing than it actually is. Swarm is an app that does take a bit of getting used to, for sure. But it is mostly accessible.

Submitted by KE7ZUM on Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Actualy simply hit leader board then the back button.

Here is a podcast demoing the interface, or what I could do of it in the time I had.

Submitted by KE7ZUM on Tuesday, August 26, 2014

I explain that in my podcast which you can find in one of my comments above the one I just made. I use both apps and they both come in handy.

Submitted by riyu12345 (not verified) on Tuesday, August 26, 2014

I use Blindsquare and was thinking of signing up for a forsquare account and have a question.
What's the point of it? I mean if I sign up and check in to my fave bakery for example, what would that do?
Is it so that people can find places easier? Or do you get points towards things for checking in? Could someone explain why you'd want to sign up for a forsquare account?

Submitted by KE7ZUM on Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Think of the new and improed 4sq like yelp, except 4sq is accessible, even more so. Swarm will help you check in and make plans with other people and let you see plans in your area. I personally use both, and used both to pick up my bf at the bus station by usign swarm to view his check in, and 4sq for the address and location of the place.

Submitted by riyu12345 (not verified) on Tuesday, August 26, 2014

I've signed up for forsquare through blindsquare and just wrote a tip about ealing brawdway underground station. So swarm helps you gfind avents in your area? And what do you mean by check in? can't you do that with forsquare/blindsquare anyway? Or is it a swarm feature? Thanks for your help.

Submitted by KE7ZUM on Wednesday, August 27, 2014

You can check in via blind square by shaking the phone so I understand but since I don't se blind square I use swarm instead as it helps.

I also add places that don't yet exist using 4sq and it links up via swarm.

Submitted by Santiago on Wednesday, August 27, 2014

I believe you can check in using BlindSquare, however, I cannot confirm that, as I do not own the app yet. You cannot check in with the main Foursquare app, since they recently divided the apps in to two apps, Swarm, and Foursquare. This is basically Swarm's purpose, to check you in and to find out where your friends are. I noticed that when traveling, sometimes the main Foursquare app will come up with a notification of nearby places, depending on what's good around me, or what I'm interested in.

Submitted by Kathy Blackburn on Saturday, March 28, 2015

The March 20 update, version 8.02, introduces the ability to message nearby friends. There is no way to dismiss this message to use the app for anything. I have emailed Foursquare. Their response claims that the message should go away "in a few days." Reeally? For how long is it okay to render an app totally useless?

Submitted by KE7ZUM on Saturday, March 28, 2015

Actually yes you can. Just swipe tot he left with 3 fingers 3 or 4 times. I did this successfully every single time I had to reinstall the app which was last Monday.

Take care.

Submitted by AnonyMouse on Friday, August 21, 2015

Member of the AppleVis Editorial Team

What's New in Version 3.0

Wait for it… Wait for it…

• The leaderboard is back! Compete with your friends to see who’s having the most interesting week. Every check-in will earn you coins. You’ll get more
coins when you check in with friends, become the Mayor, extend streaks… and more! Finish near the top of your leaderboard to earn sweet prizes. Remember,
taunting your friends is encouraged... “O’Doyle Rules!”

• Messages and notifications have been combined into one easy to access inbox. In the words of Outkast, so fresh and so clean clean!

• Looking for your friends? We’ve combined the worldwide and nearby views into one “friends” tab. Keeping up and meeting up with friends just got a whole
lot easier!

• And finally, we added a new “here now” section to the nearby view. At a packed restaurant, bumping club, or raucous sports stadium? Now you can see everyone
who’s checked in with you. Man, this place is swarming!

Submitted by Misty Dawn on Monday, August 31, 2015

Wow! This latest version is so much better/easier to use/more intuitive, particularly, I think, for VoiceOver users! The only issue that still remains is, after you check in, there is no "close" option for the next screen that pops up, though, I suppose, as has been said, you can just do the VO pass-through gesture and swipe left-to-right to get out of it, though, sometimes, I have to do that a few times before it works.

Submitted by Raul on Saturday, May 28, 2016

After pressing add friends it brings my phone contacts plus an "invite" button next to each of them. How can I add twitter or facebook contacts? I only see the phonebook.

More Like This