Nowadays, consumers and businessmen alike rely heavily on their smartphones for any and all types of instant information. Before I got my first Android device, one app that I always loved and used heavily on my Blackberry was Poynt. Poynt describes itself as a “free local search application” and it does just that. In this review, I’ll be discussing the five main features of Poynt as well as pros and cons of the app overall.
Poynt’s UI is very easy to understand and aesthetically pleasing. The colorful icons for gas, business search, people search, movies, and restaurants allow for easily recognizable differentiation between them. Poynt also shows the current weather conditions, with varying background images depending on the weather. Poynt is showing me that it is sunny with a temperature of 74° F at my parent’s house in west Texas, which is quite accurate. Poynt is also very easy to use; simply scroll through the options with your touch screen or trackball, depending on your device. When you click on a specific search option, say Movies for example, there is a bar at the top showing the four other icons if you want to switch quickly to the Businesses, Gas, People, or Restaurants searches. There is also a thin bar the very top of the app for changing the way your device orients your position for your search results. You have the choice of going by cell tower, a specific address, or your GPS location. All of these choices have varying accuracy, with GPS/specific addresses obviously being the most accurate. One thing I do not like about this app, however, is that pressing the search magnifying glass button on the row of Android keys on your device does nothing to initiate a search.
If you’re a stickler about your device’s battery life like me, Poynt still works efficiently even without GPS satellites enabled. I ran a search for “verizon wireless” in the Businesses application of Poynt and still got fairly accurate listings of the closest Verizon Wireless stores in my vicinity. The very first choice is actually the store I go to most often. There are paid suggestions on every search you do using Poynt, but Poynt makes a good distinction between what you searched and the paid suggestions. This is what keeps the app free! As with all searches Poynt can do for you, you have many options if you click on the search suggestion you want; Call, Map, Directions, Search From Here, Send to Friend, and Website.
If there’s anything I enjoy just as much as being an Android geek, it’s going out to the movies on the weekends and catching a good flick. The Movies search capability is probably my favorite feature of Poynt. The Top 10 and Genres search options are super convenient if you’re in the mood for a specific type of movie. The showtimes are also very detailed, as they show the movie posters along with reviews and movie trailers that are launched in the native media player. Depending on the movie theater, you can even purchase tickets for your movie straight from the app. The ability to purchase tickets online from the app will be noted by a little orange ticket stub.
The Restaurants search is my second favorite feature of Poynt simply because I go out to eat a lot! Although one can argue that a more dedicated app like Urbanspoon would be a better choice for this type of search, Poynt still gets the job done efficiently. You can browse by cuisine or restaurants nearby and search by name if you know what restaurant you’re looking for. Reviews and star ratings are provided for some listings.
The use of landline phones is becoming pretty obsolete in the modern age. But, if you still need to get a hold of someone via their home phone, Poynt has got you covered. Although I don’t use this part of the application extensively, I ran a few searches and the results seemed to be accurate. The above screenshot is a search of my best friend’s name and what do you know, Poynt got the address and number 100% correct. Some information in the screenshot has been omitted for privacy purposes, of course.
The gas prices search function of Poynt is especially crucial to those who do a ton of driving. Poynt will show you the closest gas stations as well as the gas stations with the best prices in your vicinity. When searching based on price, Poynt will even ask you what type of gas you’re looking for, such as diesel, regular, mid-grade, premium, E-85, or Bio-Diesel. What’s even more useful is the app will show you the last time the prices were updated for that gas station, so you can have a feel of how accurate the price listed might be. Basically, Poynt can save you money if you drive a lot.
Poynt for Android is a great lifestyle app. It truly is an all-in-one app, and for me it’s important that one app has enough functionality because I like to keep a lot of free space on my Android device. The app is very powerful because of its ability to search for all types of information you might be needing on the go. At the same time it is also easy to use, so it is a must-have for beginner and experienced Android users alike. As I mentioned early, however, I do not like the fact that the dedicated search button on my device does not initiate any type of search no matter where I press it while the Poynt app is open. To me that seemed sort of strange and counter-productive, but for others that will probably be no big deal. Overall, I would give Poynt 5/5 stars both for its ease of use and powerful functionality in just one app. Best of all, it’s free in the Android Market.