Jul 19, 2011
It’s Friday night, and your significant other says, “Let’s try a new restaurant tonight!” Sure, that sounds like a good idea, but how do you pick the restaurant? If only there were something that could Poynt you in the right direction. No, that wasn’t a typo, it’s the name of an app designed to do just that!
Poynt lets you sort though local entertainment that falls into several different categories, including restaurants, movie theaters, and events. When you first fire up the app, it takes a few seconds to figure out where you are based on your device’s GPS, and from there you’re just a couple of clicks away from finding whatever type of establishment you’re looking for.
The interface is simple and clean. Just tap one of the buttons on the main screen to get to the type of establishment you’re looking for, and from there you’ll be presented with several filters to help narrow down your search. For example, when searching for a restaurant, you can sort the results by nearby restaurants, or type of cuisine. Poynt could definitely benefit from additional filtering options, but the ones in place do a pretty good job of narrowing things down for you.
Searching for something to do using Poynt is a breeze, but sifting through the search results is another story entirely. Poynt just aggregates search results from other services like City Search and Super Pages, and as a result, some of the suggestions it makes aren’t great. The first time we did an events search, the first result was a class about real estate located about thirty miles from our current location. Either this particular listing was brought up at the top of the list in error, or it was a sponsored result that wasn’t being labeled as such. There were several other equally suspicious events listed, including one titled “Networking Event” held at a local lounge. The event was described as a mixer for anyone interested in the entertainment industry, and reminded us of those “Want to be a model? Just pay us $500” scams.
Most of the search results were legitimate, and worth checking out, but the ones that weren’t seemed like extremely blatant advertisements for extremely useless (and in some cases spammy) products. This happened far more often in the events section than any other section in the app. Restaurants and movie theaters turned up listings that were legit, or clearly labeled as being “sponsored”.
With apps like Yelp and Where offering similar functionality, it’s going to come down to personal preference. If you love Poynt’s interface, and you don’t mind skimming past the occasional dubious listing then Poynt will serve you well. If you’re looking for a more robust set of search features, you might want to look elsewhere.