The app's Google Play listing notes, "Introducing messages! In this release, we've added the ability to message your nearby friends (even if they don't have Swarm) to quickly and easily meet up. Also, when viewing a friend's check-in, you can now quickly see more details about the place, including which of your friends has been there." The update also reworks the app's UI slightly as the check-in button is now placed at the bottom centre of the screen. Notably, the app update now allows users to send messages to people who don't use Swarm.
Swarm's Product Manager Nick Burton told TechCrunch, "We wanted to get rid of the social pressure to be funny or interesting on public comments. We think it will bring up the value of neighbourhood sharing, which lets you see your friends' general proximity, and we hope that this will help people start reaching out to their nearby friends a little more often."
Foursquare launched the Swarm app in May last year and as an attempt to split the original Foursquare app into two - where Foursquare featured just location discovery and sharing, while Swarm allowed users to check-in, find friends in the vicinity and share other stuff at a given place. The Swarm app's highlight feature is neighbourhood sharing that lets users share what they are up to with those nearby.