AppStar Picks App Review
Mom’s Rating: 5/5
Kids’ Rating: NA
Recommended Grades/Ages: Moms and Dads
Skills Developed: Educational Apps, Homeschooling Tool
Available On/Price: Universal (iPhone/iPod/iPad) – Free
Reviewed on: iPad
AppStar Picks is the collaborative effort of a variety of children’s app reviewers who have come together to offer up their best of the best recommendations for children’s apps. It currently includes over 320 reviews of quality apps reviewed by sites run by moms and educators.
Carefully categorized, apps run the gamut from books, early learning, art and creative play, education, games, entertainment, special needs, seasonal, utilities, and multi-lingual apps – most of these categories also contain sub-categories to make browsing through the apps as simple as possible.
Participating review sites include: Fun Educational Apps, Digital Storytime, Applicable2U, Teachers With Apps, The iMums, And Apps for Homeschooling (disclosure – yes, that’s me!) Full reviews are shown within the app along with large screenshots from the app (all screenshots are available in a gallery style viewing mode as well).
The app is clearly sorted, letting you look up reviews by category, search for reviews by keyword, see reviews displayed by list, thumbnail, or icon view, and even add apps to your wishlist. Reviews can also be listed by review site. The app can also be set to automatically transition between a daytime and nighttime display – both of which can be customized to your personal tastes. Fonts can be resized and text alignment can also be set in the app’s appearance settings. Amongst the other many settings are the ability to set search precision, customize the length of time reviews are shown as new, and many others.
While app prices change often, AppStar Picks does let you know if an app is currently discounted from its previous price.
Ratings Note: Since this app is designed as a tool for parents to find and purchase apps for their children, I haven’t given this app a Kids’ Rating. Don’t be surprised if you find them peeking at screenshots over your shoulder as you browse and research though – the clear, colorful design is very appealing.
Other Notes: This app does not include in-app purchases or advertising. It does include external links to the App Store, to email, links that load sites within the app (review sites), and social media integration.
What We Liked:
It can be so hard to winnow through the flood of apps entering the App Store on a daily basis – and that’s where review sites come in. As a reviewer, my opinion is biased perhaps, but having access to a wealth of detailed reviews before I buy apps is such a boon to me. I love personal recommendations from reviewers I can trust, and many of these trustworthy sites top picks are found within this single app. You might even find a new favorite review site based on the reviews you read from the reviewers included in this app!
While not all of the apps are strictly educational, they are all child-oriented, and MANY – possibly even the majority – are potentially of use to homeschooling families depending on their needs. This app is a great way to quickly narrow down your options when it comes to tackling a certain skill or subject, or when looking for a fun gift or reward for a child.
What We Didn’t Like:
Nothing really! This app is only going to get better in the future, as each new update will add more reviews. One thing to keep in mind perhaps is that the app isn’t sorted into age/grade levels like this site is, but the categories are immensely helpful.
So much care, time, and effort have been put into the detailed reviews included in AppStar Picks. This timesaving resource combines the favorite apps of six different review sites for a best-of-the-best app browsing experience. If you’re stumped on where to find a quality app for your child’s needs, whether educational or recreational, this free app is an easy to use, richly featured resource.
Have you downloaded this app? Let us know what you and your children thought – leave a comment!