Beer apps

Beer drinking is an activity which has generally remained unchanged for hundreds of years.

But as technology makes our life easier, it also makes deciding what and where to drink easier too.

Being of the ‘smartphone generation’ I’m a big fan of apps and there are so many available these days that I like trying new ones and seeing what else is out there. I’m an Android user and luckily these days most apps are released for the platform at the same time as iPhone.

Here’s my thoughts on a couple I’ve tried.

Perfect Pint

Oh I so want to love this app. The general idea is good – check in to a pub with what you’re drinking and it builds up a view of what you like then recommends when some of your favourites are available in new locations. There’s also a little game of beer bingo with it so it marks of the various beverages you’ve sampled. The latest update also includes beer vouchers if you check in to certain locations.

It all sounds really good in theory. The problem is the execution. I lost patience with it and deleted it when I tried to check in at the Marble Arch and it told me I was too far away from it to check in despite being sat in the pub and deleted it. Then I tried it again but it kept crashing. I’m back on it for a third time trying again to see if it is now bug-free. It’s a shame I’ve had bad experiences with it as I do desperately want to love it!

Good Beer Guide

This is Camra’s own app. I’ve never used it before but while I’m blogging about beer apps I thought I should give it a go.

The most important thing about this app is although it is free, it’s very limited without paying for a subscription. Disappointingly, it’s not free for Camra members which I would expect. I’ve had a look around and it’s not very exciting. But as I’ve not paid for it I can’t see it all. However, from a little browse it’s basically a list of names and addresses of pubs so doesn’t inspire me to pay for it.

Untappd

This is my current obsession. It is very similar to Perfect Pint but a lot more functional. You choose the beer you’re drinking then can check in to a location or not, which is ideal if you’re enjoying a tipple at home. It’s basically the opposite of Perfect Pint as it’s got more of a focus on the beer rather than the pub. The location search comes from Foursquare data (but you don’t need to use Foursquare to have an account) and you also unlock badges as you go. Other features include adding friends, following breweries you like and seeing nearby pubs and popular beers. And the best part about it is it works! I’ve not found any bugs and although it is from the US it includes every English brewery I’ve searched for so far.

So there are my little reviews of three of the apps available out there. Out of these three, Untappd wins hands down but I’m interested to see what else developers come up with to enhance the drinking experience!

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