BrightKite, Defeated By Foursquare, Takes on Another NY Startup: GroupMe

TechCrunch is reporting that the California-based startup BrightKite, previously considered a Foursquare competitor, is now pivoting away from the check-in and going all in on group messaging:

Going forward, the focus for Brightkite will mainly be on the success they’ve had with group texting. Their new ambition is to be “the default text messaging application on all phones,” they note.

BrightKite credits itself with “pioneering the check-in,” but the company lost control of the trend. In the future, BrightKite will defer to Foursquare and Facebook Places for location data and focus on group texting.

Cue BrightKite vs. New York, round two.

There are other companies in the private messaging space–the photo-sharing app Path is one that’s generated a lot of buzz–but the local favorite is GroupMe, which has been covered recently by the Tech Observer for buying lots of stickers, being viral and employing the octothorpe.

GroupMe’s founders hacked together a system for private group chats by text message at the TechCrunch Disrupt conference in New York, then went on to raise $9 million, but BrightKite has more than two million users.

We’ll be watching this showdown, and may the best startup win–no pivots!

ajeffries [at] observer.com | @adrjeffries

BrightKite, Defeated By Foursquare, Takes on Another NY Startup: GroupMe