iPhone app Review – AroundMe
AroundMe from Tweakersoft, as the iTunes description says, “allows you to find out information about your surroundings”. So, you’re driving around and need a pharmacy. This application will show the pharmacies nearest your current location and will even navigate you there if you like.
It uses the location services of the iPhone to determine your present location and it uses Google’s database to present a selection of categories of services you may be looking for that are nearby; services such as hotels, pharmacies, pubs, restaurants, movie theaters, banks, etc. Pick a category and it gives you a list of the businesses and where they are in relation to your present position, in yards even.
Then pick a business and it gives you the address, phone number and options to email the info, add it to your contacts, show it on a map and show the route from your present location. Click on the phone number and your iPhone dials your selection. The latter two of course utilize Google Maps which gets the job done, but when you leave Maps, you’re back to the iPhone menu screen. There’s no back to AroundMe, so you have to start over and search again.
AroundMe, gives me more information than I want typically, but that’s OK. I just searched for hospitals and the only one I’m aware of is St. Joseph, down in Bellingham, 15 – 20 miles away. AroundMe showed me every veterinary hospital, every walk-in clinic and some individual doctors. That’s OK, I just click show more at the bottom of the screen and up popped more selections just a little farther away and St. Joe’s was listed on the second screen.
The current list of categories is Banks, Bars, Coffee, Favorites, Gas Stations, Hospitals, Hotels, Movie Theaters, cities, Parking, Pharmacies, Pubs, Restaurants, Supermarkets, Taxis, and Theaters.
Wish list: It would be nice to have a settings screen to change the distance units, adjust the search distance and perhaps even change the search from location by giving it a zip code, maybe even some search criteria. It would be nice to have a more comprehensive category list to include things such as wi-fi hot spots, emergency services, malls, and others.
In the latest version, there is an advertisement at the top of each list. It’s annoying, but I guess they have to make money somehow.
I used this app several times on a recent West coast road trip and it found supermarkets and movie theaters and banks nearest me and navigated me right into their parking lots. I’ve been very happy with this application and you can’t beat the price; free.