Developer: Colin McFarland
Price: $0.99
Version Reviewed: 1.1
Device Reviewed On: iPad 2, iPod touch 4

iOS Integration Rating: ★★★½☆
User Interface Rating: ★★★★½
Re-use Value Rating: ★★½☆☆

Overall Rating: ★★★½☆

Pop does quite possibly the least that an app could do. It is a virtual sheet of paper that can be typed on. There’s a little folding corner that can be tapped in order to view it fullscreen. That is all that the app does. It’s designed to just be there, a simple little thing to type on without distraction or unnecessary features.

It’s universal, but there’s no kind of iCloud sync at the moment. The developers have said that’s coming, though I don’t necessarily know if that’s even really necessary. This is an app that does nothing, is defined by its simplicity, not by its features.

Clear should be the obvious comparison, in that both apps peel away advanced features in order to create a simplified experience, but as the developers have said to me, it’s kind of the anti-Clear in a way. It really doesn’t do anything productive like what Clear does. It’s just simple, and it’s there.

Now, in many ways this app is pointless, but I really feel like that’s the point. Even the default Notes app has features in it. This does not, it’s just there. Its simplicity is a statement against complex text editors.

Of course, an app like iA Writer is simple and provides distraction-free modes, but this takes it to the logical extreme, in that the features aren’t even there as an option. The app is just there, it’s just a piece of paper.

Of course, what gets done with the text is up to the user, and the app’s one feature that makes it kind of handy is that it’s easy to copy all text by calling up the text selection tools. So, maybe that random block of text is actually worth saving. Just select ‘copy all’ and paste it in another app. It’s what I’m doing with the text of this review.

Maybe this app will have benefit for people. Maybe there is an audience out there that just really wants an app where they can just write with no features at all. Then this is here. It’s why writers go out to coffee houses and places where they can sit down with wifi. Maybe that home office is just as capable, if not more so, but changing environments to one that encourages not being distracted is necessary for some people. For those people, Pop does its job. It’s simple, elegant, and doesn’t get in the way. For the rest, who need potentially-distracting functionality, people like myself, well, Pop isn’t necessary. But it’s there for those who do need it.

Posted in: iPad Apps and Games, iPad Productivity, iPhone Apps and Games, Productivity, Reviews

Tagged with: , , , , ,