24/05/2012 14:42 | By Stuart Dredge, contributor, MSN Tech & Gadgets

London 2012: Official Join In App: app of the day

Get sporty (and arty) with an official app for this summer's Olympic Games.


London 2012: Official Join In App (© The London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games Limited)

What is it?
An official app from the London 2012 organising committee that showcases everything going on around the Olympics this summer.

Coolest feature
There really is a lot going on - much of it un-sport-related - and the app does a good job of guiding you to the stuff that'll interest you.

Platforms
iPhone - Free
Android - Free

Review
Ok, so the name is a bit off-putting. Calling this the Official Join In App feels a bit jolly hockey-sticks, like a PE teacher insisting you leap over some logs and ditches for cross-country running.

Happily, this isn't the tone of the app itself, which aims to provide "a pocket guide to the Games". The key point being that this isn't just the sporting events, but all the cultural and community stuff going on around them, across the UK.

London 2012: Official Join In App (© The London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games Limited)

That means art and design exhibitions, city walks, museum installations, music concerts and all manner of other activities. It's as much 'Stuff To Do This Summer Even If You Don't Like Sport' as a promotional app for the Olympics.

With a wealth of listings, the app does a good job with its filters, helping you drill down by date, location and what you're interested in. You can switch to a map to browse events that way too. Anything you find can be starred to add it to a My Games section, keeping tabs on your planned activities.

On the Games side of things, there's lots of detail on the Torch Relay, which is currently working its way around the UK. You can even dig down to find out about individual torchbearers, which feels slightly stalky - most are normal people - but is good if you're hoping to cheer on a friend, family member or celebrity.

Practical information includes all the London 2012 social feeds, and guides to travel, accessibility, road events and ticketing for the Games, as well as good maps, and social features to tweet, check in and post photos during the events.

You'll want to be on a wi-fi network the first time you use the app, as it downloads up to 30MB of extra data to update its events listings. Augmented reality features are in there somewhere too, but if you value your battery life while on a day out, you'd be advised to ignore them.

Even so, the London 2012 app does its job very well: highlighting the fact that there's a lot more to this summer's Olympic Games than the central sporting events. It'll be particularly useful for tourists, but Brits - sporty or otherwise - will get a lot out of it too.

4 stars


0Comments