If you’re traveling this summer, it could be a challenge to find restaurants and other businesses and learn what’s going on around you in an unfamiliar area. While there are plenty of navigation apps to help you find a specific location and the old stand-by Yelp to search for local businesses, few apps merge information from multiple sources to bring you a comprehensive view of everything available around you. For this, Cynapse’s location browser Localscope is an excellent choice.
Localscope uses your iPhone’s GPS capabilities to pinpoint where you are and show you information from 15 sources about the businesses and goings-on around you. These sources are Google Local, Google Places, Facebook, Foursquare, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, Panoramio, Flickr, Picasa, Bing, Wikimapia, Wikipedia, Citysearch, and Yelp.
Localscope presents you with results from these sources in a gallery, list, map, or augmented reality view. The augmented reality view uses your iPhone’s camera and overlays information to mark results in real-time. If you choose the list or gallery views, the red arrow icon on each item actually points out its location in relation to you.
You select which source to view using a virtual slider at the bottom of the screen. When you view the details for a selected item, you can choose to share the location via text message, email, Twitter, or Facebook. Depending on the selected item, you can also jump directly to business listings in the Yelp app or to the YouTube app to see videos, and more.
Localscope also offers search functionality with several pre-defined search terms so you can easily locate restaurants, gas stations, hotels and even Wi-Fi hotspots without typing anything in.
Earlier this month Cynapse launched a Localscope API that other developers can use to launch Localscope directly to complete specific functions. In its recent update to version 2.5, Localscope gained compatibility with the URL scheme used by App Cubby’s Launch Center Pro to let you configure shortcut actions to launch discover mode or automatically complete a specific search.
Localscope works around the world so there are no location limitations to spoil your discovery of places and events to enjoy as you travel. The app costs $1.99 and requires iOS 4.3 or higher on an iPhone or iPod touch. Localscope also works on the iPad though it lacks an interface optimized for its larger screen.