Playboard Best App Guide – Android app recommendation & discovery engine
Sep 11, 2012 8:10 AM –
Playboard Best App Guide is an app & game recommendation and discovery engine for Android devices. It features an intuitive interface and helps you find just the kind of apps you prefer.
Tested on: HTC One X
Pros & Cons:
- Lots of categories to search and add to your dashboard!
- Great user interface!
- Good selection of staff picks!
- Online community elements!
- Only includes a tiny snippet of app/game information.
- Only one screenshot of each app.
- No localised pricing.
- Swiping can be a little unresponsive.
Playboard Best App Guide is an interactive app recommendations and discovery too that helps you get much more out of the Google Play Store. It also helps you find the latest and greatest games and apps. If you really like productivity apps, or a specific type of game, for example, Playboard helps you identify and download just what you’re looking for.
You begin with a basic dashboard of subscriptions. If you think of the way Google Currents lets you subscribe to news sources, the same is applied here only instead of news services it’s app types. Basic ones to start you off include; Hot Apps, Hot Games, Local apps, Just-in Games and Must-have Apps. You can then add more channels based on your own preferences. Personally, I really like photography apps as I like taking pictures on my Android device and I’m constantly on the look-out for cool new apps which help me do that. Therefore, I can add a channel that specifically finds Photography apps for me.
You can add all kind of channels, from app and game categories (personalisation apps, racing games, etc.) to staff pick channels and country-specific apps. One issue I did note was that, even though I’m in the United Kingdom, and subsequently can search for apps popular in the UK, all the prices are in USD. It would be nice to at least alter location settings to use local currency.
The app is, however, really easy to use and similar to the likes of Flipboard and Google Currents in the way you simply add channels which interest you. Once you go into a channel, apps can be swiped from from the right hand side. While this is easy I did sometimes find it somewhat laborious as you can just flick across the screen. Instead you have to take your finger from one side of the screen to the other fully in order to see the next app. You get used it, but it’s not as responsive as other apps, or perhaps even your own homescreen which features the same controls.
One further disappointment was the scarcity of app information within Playboard itself. You get a solitary screenshot and only 4 short lines of description. It would be nicer to see a little more, like you can do so with other app-discovery tools such as AppAware, AppBrain and Best Apps Market. Instead you just get forwarded to the Google Play Store which means leaving Playboard altogether.
Playboard – Dashboard
Playboard – Add more app types
Playboard – Typical app view
Playboard – App view with Google Play link or launch
Playboard – Search channels
Playboard – Select App types
Playboard – Settings
Playboard – Settings 2
For finding new apps and games, it’s a great resource and very useful. One additional feature worth mentioning is the web interface. Essentially it allows you to create lists of your favourite apps and games and share it with the community. It’s easy to set up and a cool way to share your own recommendations.
Ease of Use:
Aside from the swiping issue I discussed earlier, the app is otherwise very intuitive and uncomplicated. Certainly too, if you’ve used the likes of Google Currents, you’ll already understand the way you can add channels to your dashboard.
This depends very much on the individual user and how often s/he looks for new applications to use of games to play. Content is regular updated so for the true app-fiend it’s something they can use very frequently.
The interface is well designed and straightforward to navigate. Exploring Playboard is very user friendly and it hosts a wide variety of categories to help you locate recommendations based on your own tastes.