Folks looking to take advantage of the holidays this week by venturing out to their favorite eating spots may want to check out the latest version of Yelp. The iOS client was updated today with a new feature that allows you to make restaurant reservations from within the app.
The new feature is the direct result of Yelp’s summer acquisition of SeatMe, a tech start-up that developed a solution for making online reservations at popular food and drink locations, and reduces the friction between discovering a great place on Yelp and experiencing it…
From the official Yelp blog:
You may recall that SeatMe joined the Yelp family back in July and now we’re excited to introduce the ability to book SeatMe reservations directly from a restaurant or nightlife venue’s Yelp listing! The feature is available online and on iOS and Android…
…Since waiting in line isn’t your favorite thing to do (just guessing, but pretty sure I’m right), whip out Yelp and nab a reso before you head out. Now instead of just drooling over the review highlights for Oakland, CA hot spot Hopscotch (duck fat chips and sweet potato gnocchi?!) you can take your fantasizing to the next level and snag a reservation on the spot.
Even if you’re not a foodie, SeatMe can help you plan a night out. Yelp says that 20% of SeatMe venues are bars and lounges so you can reserve a seat or a bar table at your favorite watering hole. In the iOS app, making a reservation is very quick—only took me a couple of taps.
It looks like this SeatMe feature is going to replace Yelp’s integration with OpenTable. The two companies were definitely competitors before the buyout, and in today’s blog post, Yelp’s Alex Kvamme noted that bars and restaurants “love SeatMe” because of their flat fee structure.
At any rate, you can grab the latest version of the Yelp app for iPhone and iPad in the App Store for free. Also, keep in mind that SeatMe isn’t available for all locations yet.