WorkSnug For The iPhone First Look
WorkSnug for the iPhone has hit the appstore so here are the results of the first look.
WorkSnug in case you don’t know is an augmented realty application that helps you find a place to remote work in London. WorkSnug goes beyond just pointing you to the nearest coffee shop that has free wireless access as the team have actually visited many of the locations and rated them for noise levels (no one wants to work in a really noise environment) as well as useful information like the availability of plug sockets so you’ll never be without power. You can switch the search between all locations or only those that have been reviewed so you’ll have lots of locations to choose from.
If you have used any of the Acrossair products before then this looks very similar and it looks like it uses the same augmented reality engine, you hold the phone up in front of you and you’re in augmented reality mode, put the phone flat and you switch to the map view. If you read this blog often you’ll know my main bitch is when we don’t get the option to choose the unit of distance and get forced to work with something alien. I’m please to say that WorkSnug can switch seamlessly between miles and kilometers. No more trying to figure out if 1.87km is walking distance. Another neat feature is you can limit the number of results displayed so the UI doesn’t’ become too cluttered. (see the last picture below).
My early tests shows it works pretty well but I did find a couple of little problems. When you load the application and change the scan range to see just what is within a nearby distance it doesn’t actually affect the search results. What I mean is if say only show me nearby places within a 2 mile range, when I switch to the augmented reality view the application still shows me places that are 5 or 6 miles away. I have to close the app and reopen it before my search range is picked up. The map view is sometimes a bit suspect, putting the phone flat gives a white screen and no matter how long you leave it no map is drawn. When it does this all the entries disappear from the augmented reality view as well even though there should still be some in range.
While the app has lots of potential it’s a bit disappointing that these bugs are still present, I have only had the product for 10 minutes and found them so the QA tester needs a bit of a kick on that one.
The best thing about the app is the work the guys have put in to reviewing the locations and the work they have done in presenting the infomation to the user. That kind of data is invaluable and since they have the option to switch between miles/km we can assume they will role out the application to others parts of the world in the future.
I’m not completely sold on the augmented realty aspect though as it doesn’t really add any value to the application. Yep sure you can hold the camera up and see the locations but it is much easier to get a flavor of location in the map view. However all that said it’s free so if you live in London it’s still worth your time taking a look and worth and installing.
Feel free to agree/disagree.