We are publishing six wine tasting mobile app reviews — Snooth, Cor.kz, My Wine Taster Lite, SecondGlass, Taste A Wine, and Wine Picks. These apps purport to help you with your wine cellar, wine tasting, and/or wine buying right from your mobile device. These seem worth a bit of testing.
We’ll give each of the six an in-depth review on a monthly basis. The first app (Taste A Wine) has just been reviewed. We will review the apps in the order of our first impressions of each. That is, we’ll review the best first, the second-best second, and so on. But our final ranking may differ from our first impressions. None of these apps were anywhere near perfect. There are bugs, inconsistencies, some terrible user interface mistakes, and failures to recognize the unique nature of wine.
The First Impressions Rankings:
- Taste A Wine is best for making new mobile tasting notes while out and about. It takes photos.
- WineTaster Lite is second best for that activity, with less flexibility than Taste A Wine but a few additional features. (If having a photo record of wine bottles and labels you are tasting is important, WineTaster was the only app that made the photo process painless.)
- Cor.kz and Snooth try to give you remote access to both your private and their online databases of wine. Neither allows much remote updating so they are not so good for recording tasting while out and about. They expect you to do that from home.
- Second Glass and Wine Picks shill flagrantly for wineries, retailers, and trade associations that have bought screen real estate from them. If you want to look at ads while you shop at the wine aisle these may be right for you.
We are an iOS device household. Every mobile app here runs on the iPhone and/or iPad. We tested the apps on our iPad 2 and iPad classic. Probably some of these apps are available for Android. These apps were tested only with wifi, although they support 3G. (Of course, Taste a Wine and Wine Taster Lite are both mainly working with the local on-device storage.)
Location of Database
Complicating matters further is the relationship between the mobile device local app and the associated Web site in the cloud. Cor.kz and Snooth both rely on access to a remote database to retrieve information. There is no local database — That means when you don’t have connectivity you can’t get the information. None of the apps we tested are capable of storing your library of tasting notes on the mobile device client. However Taste-a-vin does have local storage of “draft” tasting notes. You can keep a long collection of these drafts locally and never connect to the web site database at all. When we go to a wine event, or a winery crawl, we need significant on-device storage for collecting 10 to 30 notes. These places have no connectivity. Besides uploading the notes to a web “community” we’d also like to be able to save them to a private Dropbox cloud storage provider or our PC in a non-proprietary format like excel, .csv, Filemaker, Access and such.