Burgeoning winos won’t savor buggy Blush for Wine iPhone app

Jan 17, 2012
Shine

I’m certainly no oenophile (red, white and sparkling is as advanced as I get), so apps that bolster wine-shopping confidence usually pique my interest. Blush for Wine, designed for iPhone and iPod Touch is no exception, but, perhaps to Blush’s embarrassment, I didn’t come away from the app with a solid vino education. Blush offers […]

I’m certainly no oenophile (red, white and sparkling is as advanced as I get), so apps that bolster wine-shopping confidence usually pique my interest. Blush for Wine, designed for iPhone and iPod Touch is no exception, but, perhaps to Blush’s embarrassment, I didn’t come away from the app with a solid vino education.

Blush offers a five-question quiz to help determine your mood and recommend a type of wine. The questions vary, depending on your selection, but the results were not as diverse, with the same bottles appearing again and again. I did like that I could select which price range to view, but this would be more helpful if users could select multiple choices to eliminate refreshing (this app isn’t a speed demon).

In addition to the mood selector, Blush also offers a label scanner alongside its search function, but I was unable to get any results on my iPhone 4 (it repeatedly errored out) — perhaps users with iPhone 4S will fare better, as the app supports voice search on those devices. If you can get this to work, it could prove useful in the wine aisle — that is, if your scanned bottle contains any information. In doing some random searches, I found that not all included types contained descriptions. Descriptions that were present varied, too. I’m not sure where they are pulled from, but one bottle listed that it was currently out of stock. Nothing specified which store had the empty shelf, and I certainly didn’t learn anything about that particular vintage.

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Blush for Wine also claims to be able to locate nearby wines. Despite clearly registering that I am in Chicago, the app never gave any options for locating nearby bottles. I double-checked that location services were on (yes, and the GPS indicator displayed at the top of the screen), but never once did I see the location indicator that exists on app screen shots.

This, coupled with countless App Store reviews complaining of continued API errors (I didn’t get this particular one in my tests, though), lead me to conclude that Blush for Wine isn’t ready for prime time. I liked Blush for Wine’s quiz, but on the whole, wino-wannabes can do better elsewhere.

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