Google Places with Hotpot blog

Add Friends on Hotpot, Get Great Place Recommendations

Thursday, January 6, 2011 | 3:25 PM


Whether you’re looking for a good plumber or a great date night location, your friends are always the ones you turn to for recommendations. Take my friend Caitlin for instance. She’s a San Francisco restaurant connoisseur who I always hit up when I’m looking for a new place to try.

Hotpot gives you the ability to add friends whose tastes you trust. Once they’re added, you’ll start to see their place recommendations in your Google Maps search results. As you add more and more friends on Hotpot, your search results will be even more personal and relevant to you, creating a much richer search and maps experience. Naturally, Caitlin was one of the first friends I added on Hotpot, and I’ve been using her recommendations ever since.

Some of you have asked us how this whole adding friends thing works. It’s really easy, here’s how:

  • Visit, and click Friends List along the left.
  • Click the Add Friends button on the right navigation box.
  • Enter the email addresses of people you’d like to add as friends in the text box, and click Add.

Once you’ve added a friend, they’ll receive an email asking them to share recommendations with you on Google Places. After they confirm your friendship, you’ll start to see their recommendations in search results. Here’s one of Caitlin’s recommendations that popped up during one of my recent Maps searches:

You can see your friends’ recommendations when searching on, and on Google Maps for mobile on Android.

Have your friends recommendations led you to a new local gem? Share your finds in the comments.

Cecelia Stewart, Google Hotpot Product Specialist


andy b said...

It makes me nervous because I do not know anyone using Google Places or the HotPot. I think if I knew who was using it I would make them friends. I find it difficult to try to attract people to HotPot.

Vanessa Schneider said...

Hey Andrew -- Have you tried sending Hotpot invitations and asking your friends to sign up with you? Would love to know more specifically why you're finding it difficult to get them on board. It really is a much richer search experience when you're all on it together. Ping me any time: vanessa at google dot com.

- Vanessa, Hotpot community manager

Cláudio said...

Hotpot should be translate to more languages as soon as possible.

It could help a lot to spread it out.

Vanessa Schneider said...

Absolutely agree, Claudio. We are hard at work on localization!

- Vanessa, Hotpot community manager

jvandub said...

Hotpot should have a facebook friend request tool like gchat, gmail, etc.