ViBe Review

ViBe Review

Dec 6, 2011

Some apps remind me of kitchen tools, in that their surprising necessity in life comes only after you have discovered them. For example I wasn’t aware that I needed a mandoline until I bought one and was able to slice mushrooms so thin you can’t even believe. And in the same way, until I downloaded this app I wasn’t aware of how nice it could be to have different vibration tones set for different contacts in my phone.

The designers certainly went out of their way to make this app easy to use. It’s straightforward, intuitive, and very quick to set up. The app immediately opens to a display on your contact list. Long-press on a contact to select it, with the option to select multiple contacts for batch edits. Click OK and you are brought to the different vibration options. In that menu you can tap a vibration option once to experience a sample, or long-press to select it. Your settings are automatically saved, and that’s all there is to it. The app even has a charming pale-blue calico patterned background, not that it needs any window dressings to make it attractive.

I hate to think that I’m easy to impress, but I loved this app almost immediately. The options that come with the app are Knock Knock, Ramp Down (a sort of descending buzz tone), Bee, Heartbeat and Crash. I picked my favourite people, assigned them appropriate tones, and now I know who is texting me before I even have to take my phone out of my bag.

The unavoidable drawback to the app is that there aren’t enough different tones. The app comes with five free tones installed, with the option to buy five more. This is great if you only have ten people in your contact list. I was pleased with the free tones, but felt that in the name of science I should purchase a premium tone. I went with Explosion for my brother’s profile, and found that it is nearly identical to the tone I had already set for him. But I can’t blame the makers too much, there is really only so many different ways for a phone to vibrate distinctively. They’ve done the best that they can.