Michelin steers iPhone users to fine dining

May 4, 2009
Photo taken in February 2009 at the Michelin guides headquarters in Paris, shows the 2009 edition of the famous gastronomic guide. Venerable dining guide Michelin on Monday expanded its menu of iPhone applications that steer users of the popular Apple smartphones to fine restaurants in cities they may be roaming.

Venerable dining guide Michelin on Monday expanded its menu of iPhone applications that steer users of the popular Apple smartphones to fine restaurants in cities they may be roaming.

Michelin programs available Monday in Apple's online App Store include versions for New York and San Francisco as well as iPhone versions of the famed French guide's offerings in Germany, Spain, Portugal, Italy and Britain.

The applications, priced at 6.99 dollars per city, take advantage of iPhone satellite positioning features to locate nearby restaurants deemed worth visiting.

IPhone programs also work on iPod Touch MP3 players, which are essentially iPhones without telephone capabilities.

The software allows for targeted searches based on people's tastes or random browsing of rated restaurants. In an Internet-Age move, Michelin is letting iPhone users upload comments about dining experiences.

Michelin, which is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year, still relies on trained inspectors for its vaunted 3-star restaurant rating system.

Star-rated restaurants make up about a tenth of the guides, which have sections such as "Bib Gourmand" for diners interested in getting the most out of their budgets.

Michelin in March launched a full version of its guide for and iPod Touch MP3 player users in France. That month Michelin also made available an application with listings of tens of thousands of restaurants in Europe.

(c) 2009 AFP

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