Ubi is a mobile front end to the prestigious, especially in Europe, Michelin Guides. The mobile site at ubiubi.mobi covers most U.S. metropolitan areas and lets you search for restaurants by keyword and location. Results, which seem to be limited to places listed in the Michelin guidebooks, include address, click to call phone numbers and maps. There are links to the Michelin reviews but registration is required to view them. Basic registration is free but limits you to viewing just 10 reviews per month, unlimited access is $2.50/month. The concise reviews average 130 words and include price range, rating and Michelin’s elaborate serries of symbols indicting things like comfort level, wine selection, cash only, etc. There are separate listings by city of restaurants that have won one or more of the coveted Michelin stars or offer “amazing” value, late night dining, brunch or garden seating.
Unlike Michelin itself, Ubi allows users to rate and comment of restaurants. There doesn’t seem to be any way to read other people’s comments however which seems kind of pointless.
I have to wonder if the Michelin brand is enough to motivate users to go to the trouble of registering and when they have run through there month quota, paying. Ubi faces some stiff competition from free crowd sourced sites like Yelp, Google Local and Boorah which have larger databases and more extensive reviews. What do you think, can Ubi succeed on the basis of the Michelin name or do they need to find another business model like ad supported or reservations and booking? Source Oh! Mobile Directory
Ratings: Content Usability
Ready.mobi Score: 4 “Good”
Mobile Link: www.ubiubi.mobi/