AppWatch: A look at what publishers are launching in mobile apps
Application: WineRatings+ App
Produced by: M. Shanken Communications, Inc.
Price: Free with in-app purchase options
Platform: iPad & iPhone
Description & Features: Don't know the difference between a Chenin Blanc and a Sauvignon Blanc? The world of good wine is a big, intimidating place, but with Wine Spectator's new "WineRatings+" app, you'll be able to impress your friends with your vast wine wisdom and make purchasing and drinking decisions with ease.
The WineRatings+ app features educational articles and videos about the fundamentals of wine, a wine ratings search function (with the option to filter by price, score, producer, name and region), and a real-time news feed which allows users to stay up to date on current wine culture. The app also provides vintage charts covering 55 of the world's principal wine regions and grape varieties to help wine drinkers assess the quality, character and peak drinking time of each region's wines. Users can easily save wines to their "favorites" list for future reference, and share their top picks via social media such as Facebook and Twitter.
"I think one of the best features of smartphones in general is constant access to breaking news. Our WS360 tab is a news feed that delivers all the original content we post on our Web site, WineSpectator.com, optimized for mobile. For people really engaged with wine, it's educational and entertaining," said Tom Matthews, Wine Spectator's Executive Editor.
When asked about the best feature of the WineRatings+ app, however, Matthews, responded, "Our database —which now contains more than 270,000 ratings, with an additional 1,000+ reviews added automatically each month—is the most comprehensive and credible source of wine reviews in the world. Wine lovers are taking full advantage of the opportunity to use it where they need it, in wine shops and restaurants." The wine reviews database includes ratings, detailed tasting notes, release prices and current auction prices—all the information needed to make smart, informed wine purchases.