This article was published on June 19, 2013

Twitter nabs local discovery engine Spindle, shutters service and moves team to San Francisco

Twitter nabs local discovery engine Spindle, shutters service and moves team to San Francisco

Social discovery engine Spindle has been acquired by Twitter in an acqu-hire deal. The move will see the team leave Boston to join “the Flock” in San Francisco. The deal was first reported by All Things D. Unfortunately for users of the service, the Spindle service will be shut down starting today as the company moves to focus on “new and exciting opportunities.”

Functioning as a local discovery service, Spindle services San Francisco, New York City, and Boston. The concept was that context provided to mobile devices and social networks makes it possible to assemble a better search query for information — something far better than traditional keyword searches could. The app uses your social graph and other important signals like location and time of day to put together a smart mobile search engine.

Spindle was started by former Microsoft search engineers.

In its blog post announcing the news, the Spindle team shared that it spent the past 2.5 years trying to build a product to help answer the question “What’s happening nearby right now?” Interestingly, that’s something they very well might be able to accomplish at Twitter:

By joining forces with Twitter, we can do so much more to help you find interesting, timely, and useful information about what’s happening around you.

With Facebook, Foursquare, Path, and most major social networks capitalizing on locations and check-ins, the integration of Spindle’s team into Twitter could help the company build better location offerings. Twitter already offers users the ability to afix geotags to their tweets so that people know where they’re being sent from. Perhaps in the future users will begin receiving tweets from businesses that know they’re nearby or something to that effect?

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

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