It isn’t worth learning the Facts of Lice from this poorly crafted app

Sep 6, 2011
Health

With back to school in full swing, it’s possible your little ones have added more to their heads than just new knowledge. Yep, I’m talking tiny, creepy, crawly lice. Fairy Tales Hair Care, makers of lice-prevention products, has created an app to help you learn the Facts of Lice before the fine-toothed comb comes out. […]

With back to school in full swing, it’s possible your little ones have added more to their heads than just new knowledge. Yep, I’m talking tiny, creepy, crawly lice. Fairy Tales Hair Care, makers of lice-prevention products, has created an app to help you learn the Facts of Lice before the fine-toothed comb comes out.

Facts of Lice offers facts on lice prevention and removal, including video tutorials. The information is relatively complete, but is obviously skewed toward Fairy Tales Hair Care products. The best feature of this app is its anonymous form for reporting a lice outbreak. The faster an infestation is reported, the more likely the outbreak can be minimized. You can use the outbreaks tab to see what ZIP codes in your state are experiencing problems — but ZIP information is the closest you’ll get to pinpointing the infestation.

Although the app provides some education, the info is nothing you wouldn’t find with a Google search, and the app’s interface and design is terrible. Many of the graphics aren’t retina-ready. I found it odd that to find an outbreak users can’t just enter a ZIP code directly. When viewing videos pulled from YouTube, the app doesn’t play the videos automatically. Instead the viewing screen opens a browser in a frame and launches the actual YouTube website. You need to hit play here for the video to play normally.

Finally, for an app centered on a product, I was shocked to find that there was no shopping function. The company’s products are listed in the prevention category, which would be a perfect opportunity to link to an online store. The app’s description boasts a store locator, but this isn’t entirely accurate. If you head to the “About Us” section, there’s a hyperlink to the company’s website. The page launches in the small viewing area, and it’s not a mobile site, which makes it a pain to use.

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Fairy Tale Hair Care might be good at eradicating lice, but if you want the facts, stick to a web search and skip this app.

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Kathryn Swartz

Kathryn Swartz is a freelance writer/editor who doesn't know how people lived pre iPhone. She attended the Missouri School of Journalism.

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