If you have a smartphone like us, you probably use it for much more than making and receiving calls or sending and receiving text messages. A couple of weeks ago, we highlighted GasBuddy, an excellent app for finding the cheapest gas in your area. This week, we take a look at Poynt, a handy free app for finding local businesses, retailers and events, wherever you are.
When opening the app on our Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1, we found the home screen easy to navigate, with easily distinguishable icons for business search, people search, movies, gas, restaurants, events and offers. Poynt also shows your local weather conditions.
Navigating through the various search options is very easy. You swipe through the icons until you reach the one you want to use. Even after selecting one, it is easy to move between the search options using the navigation bar at the top of the screen.
When you select the Business Search option, you type in a business name, and the app will use the Super Pages directory to find those listings closest to you. The app performs local searches based on your GPS location or based on a fixed address you enter.
Tapping on a business that comes up through the search, you are given the address and phone number. From this page, you can also add it to your contacts, call the business, plot it on a map or get directions to it. When available, there is also a link to the company’s website.
Poynt’s people search allows you to look up people by name or perform reverse lookups by phone number or address.
The app’s restaurant search allows you to search nearby restaurants by cuisine and name. Like with the business search, selecting a restaurant will give you the address and phone number. In addition, you can see the business hours and user reviews from CitySearch, and you can also plot directions from your current location. A nice feature would be the ability to reserve a table from within the app via services such as OpenTable.
For movie buffs, Poynt allows you to search for movies based on movies and theaters nearby, as well as the current Top 10, by genre and keyword search. Selecting a theater gives you its address and phone number as well as a listing of movies currently showing and their times. If you select a specific movie, you can read viewer reviews, get the Rotten Tomatoes percentage rating, view the trailer or visit the movie’s website (if you have an Internet connection). You can also add a specific showing to your calendar. Again, it would be nice if you could buy movie tickets from within the app.
Having reviewed GasBuddy a couple of weeks ago, we found Poynt’s gas search feature to be a bit generic. You can search for nearby stations or find the lowest prices within a specific radius.
Poynt’s event search allows you to search for events based on location, category, venue or performer. Doing a venue search from our location, the app seemed to hit every major concert venue, art museum, and sports complex in the greater Chicagoland area. You can look for events based on over 20 different categories, including concerts, conferences and trade shows, museums, and performing arts.
Local offers attempts to mimic services such as Groupon, showing you deals in your area, primarily for dining. If you are connected to the Internet, you can link to that deal’s website, where you can purchase the deal.
Poynt is a useful all-in-one app for finding most of what you are looking for when out on the town. The searches were accurate, and the app itself is very easy to use. While I think GasBuddy is a better stand-alone app for finding the cheapest gas in your area, Poynt brings useful search functionality into a single platform. It is definitely an Android app worth checking out.