Among other news, Foursquare in June announced a partnership with American Express, which will allow users to load discounts and freebies to their AmEx credit card when they check in to certain locations. In addition, its new notifications appear with any new activity, rather than only when you check in manually to a new location. This is an attempt to provide users an incentive to return to Foursquare more frequently rather than checking in and forgetting about it.
Finally, although its recent milestones are impressive, Foursquare actually maintains a much bigger reach through integration with Facebook and Twitter. And while its new notification system is an attempt to define Foursquare as a standalone platform, the company isn't foolish enough to break ties with larger social media siblings.
On the contrary, Foursquare will seek new ways to embed with these platforms as it grows--the way it notifies Facebook friends who join Foursquare. This is all good news for small businesses, which can leverage the game-based location service, while their actions also spread across the larger social platforms.