The Modern Museum of Art. Bergdorf-Goodman. Applebee’s. MIDTOWNinmypocket by AppFury, LLC, to paraphrase Ol’ Blue Eyes, wraps Midtown Manhattan around your finger. This is true for fanny-pack wearing Midwesterners and jaded Gothamites alike. While it’s difficult to get lost in the neighborhood, the sheer number of boutiques and cultural institutions can overwhelm even the native New Yorker.
And like many New Yorkers, I find Midtown as frightening as a child does a clown. I only schlep to the land of Umbrella-holding tourist guides and gratuitously priced undergarments when I meet up with department-store or bank employees for lunch or a drink or have tickets to a Broadway show. However, with MIDTOWNinmypocket I can eliminate much of the sidewalk congestion and hone in on my desired destination.
This app lists 900 central Manhattan businesses where the user can shop, dine, drink and take in the sights. The user can navigate the directory via the proximity option or by category. Categories range from the obvious (Restaurants and Hotels) to the head-scratching (Gas and Pets, neither of which locations). To be sure, the developer has a thorough knowledge of one of the most famous destinations on earth. The most useful categories are the food and shopping ones, especially because MIDTOWNinmypocket includes discounts available at district establishments, like 10 percent off at Pop Burger and 20 percent off at the Excelsior Hotel.
Allow me to give and example of the app’s utility. Say you’re catching the latest retrospective at MOMA and have a hankering for haute cuisine or big-box chain restaurants. Use the “near me” function in the top right corner to search for your dining experience with Google maps. If you’re interested in perusing listings, the profiles list contact information and Web sites for those seeking further knowledge.
Curiously, some expected Bars entries were absent. Where are the stellar Campbell Apartments in Grand Central Terminal or the craft-beer palace The Ginger Man? Both magnets for visitors in search of Big Apple glitz and stiff suits, they merit inclusion in the MIDTOWNinmypocket‘s next update.
The reason for my lower than average score is the most frustrating of snafus some apps are all together prone to: Freezing. While looking through the bar listings, I selected one only to have the MIDTOWNinmypocket app freeze my iPhone. Twice! Repairing my beloved toy (and revenue source) took much longer than the writing of this review. Based on the single occurrence, I cannot in good faith give MIDTOWNinmypocket more than a mid-range score. No matter how useful and how beneficial to tourists and natives it may be. Hopefully the stability issues will be resolved with the next update.
It isn’t the only neighborhood directory app by the developer. AppFury, LLC, has applications for New York City’s SoHo nabe, with others in the works for Aspen, Los Angeles, Toronto and many more in the works.
MIDTOWNinmypocket requires iPhone OS 3.1.2 or later and is compatible with the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad.