Swirl iPhone app gives sample-site shoppers a new option

Jun 27, 2011
Shopping

DailyCandy’s sample shopping site Swirl is the latest to join the App Store with its Swirl for iPhone and iPod Touch. Swirl works on the same premise as other popular shopping sites — every day new sales go live with limited quantities and steep discounts. You’ll need an account to use the Swirl app, but […]

DailyCandy’s sample shopping site Swirl is the latest to join the App Store with its Swirl for iPhone and iPod Touch. Swirl works on the same premise as other popular shopping sites — every day new sales go live with limited quantities and steep discounts.

You’ll need an account to use the Swirl app, but unlike other sites, you can register for the service in-app, no wait list required. Once you’re in, you’ll see the day’s available sales — usually about five, lasting between 24 and 72 hours — as well as current pop-up shops. When browsing items, you can filter results based on size and item type, or sort items by name, price or popularity. Everything displays in retina, although I found the thumbnails to be fuzzy, so I’d recommend heading into an item’s page for a closer look. For each item, you’ll be able to see a close-up image, available sizes and product details, such as materials, size and fit and Swirl’s return policy. When you see something you like, select your size, and hit “Get it now.” You can then keep shopping or make your purchase in-app.

Obviously, the sales available in Swirl are hit-or-miss, depending on your personal tastes, but serious shopaholics can ensure that they never miss a sale start by activating the daily sale alert to send a push notification. This is the app’s best feature since Swirl’s sales don’t always start at the same time.

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Swirl’s UI is standard and functional, but the app’s real problem is speed. Pages load slowly, and if you want to view a close-up of an item or do some serious browsing, this adds up to considerable time spent in the app. It’s also not ideal when you’re dealing with sales that have limited quantities that could sell out while you’re watching the loading wheel spin.

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