Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Election 2012: Staying Informed via Mobile Apps

I guess you could say I love apps, well all things mobile. I'm fascinated by all the opportunities it brings to innovators, marketers, entrepreneurs and pretty much anyone who chooses to pick up a mobile device and have an idea. Some of these ideas come from great brands who already have an established fan and/or client base. But they're improving how they interact with consumers by leveraging mobile as a channel.

So today, let's talk about the New York Times. I have their mobile app, and I like it. I prefer the layout and design of Boston.com's app, but I'm not too picky about it - it fulfills it's main purpose by providing me with the top stories while I'm on the train or waiting in line somewhere. But what I am a fan of, however, is the NYTimes' Election 2012 app. It's an election year, and I've vowed to be more involved in the issues this year so that by the time November comes around, I'm not calling my best friend and asking her to tell me about all the candidates. This year, I'll make an informed decision. Sure, my best friend and I have similar political views, but we're not the same person and she shouldn't be my only source for the issues and candidates.

What's great about this app is that it aggregates the stories for the top six topics - not just the top six stories, but the top six topics and then the top issues for each topic. Unless you're a NYTimes digital subscriber, you can only access the top six stories in each topic, but to be honest - that's plenty of news for me. Admittedly, the flaw of this app is that the stories only come from one source - the NYTimes. An even cooler app would be an election 2012 app that aggregates all of the top stories, sorted by topic, from across a variety of sources. Still, I'm not complaining.

Here's why I think this is an app worthy of attention. Too often, many people that vote don't make informed decisions, and I'll lump myself into that at times. We focus on the party we identify with most, or the issues that are important to us. We don't pay attention to all the candidates and their stances on a variety of issues that affect Americans. This app is a way to get a high-level overview of all of the issues and each candidate's stance on them.

I try to stay away from my political opinions on this blog, so I'm not giving an opinion on the issues or the candidates, just that I think this is a great app that provides real value. I've checked it out and have been using it for a few weeks now, so I recommend it to anyone looking to make an informed decision this election year. That's my PR thought for the day.

Anyone else have any app recommendations, without party bias, that are useful for staying informed?

1 comment:

  1. For me, I used the VoterHub to keep track of the election. It’s a non-partisan mobile app for information on the 2012 election season in all 50 states. It also provides information to help you when you vote like your registration status, the location of your local polling place, etc. And best of all, it is a free mobile app.