App Reviewed on: iPhone 3GS
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I can honestly say I'm genuinely impressed by James Shaw's ability to create iOS apps. His creations are always incredibly low-key and simple, but they're also usually ingenious and ridiculously user-friendly. SocialBox is no different.
SocialBox is an all-purpose message app. It allows users to type out whatever they want or need to, then immediately post it on Facebook. Or Twitter. Or SMS. Even email. If they so desire, the same message can also be sent through all four or any combination thereof.
The best thing about SocialBox is also the best thing about everything else made by JAS applications. Namely that it's incredibly easy to use. There's no messing around with menus, sifting through options or tweaking settings. The app recognizes user accounts automatically (assuming they're saved on the device) and incorporates them as soon as it's started up. In other words once the app is installed and turned on, one can pretty much immediately begin posting to any or all of the four outlets. The interface is also brilliantly simple. Type out a message in the text field (complete with character counter), then simply press the "Twitter," "Facebook," "Email" or "SMS" button(s) when done. The message can also easily be edited down or added to after it's been sent just in case the user wishes to go into more detail than Twitter's character limit will allow (or cut back to fit it). That's all there is to it.
Of course, Twitter can automatically link with Facebook and emails can always be copy/pasted, so depending on individual outlooks SocialBox may not seem like such a huge deal. That's not to say that it's useless, but it's certainly not intended for people who don't spend a lot of time using at least two of the four services. On a more technical note, I also came across a bizarre glitch where the four posting buttons would disappear after receiving an error message stating that I had to set up an email on my iPhone. The buttons came back after restarting the app, and to be fair it's kind of my own fault for not linking an email address to my phone, but it's there and I noticed it. So yeah.
Again, SocialBox isn't for everybody but I've no doubt in my mind that it would be plenty useful for those of us who do a lot of social media-ing. It's inexpensive, insanely easy to set up and use, and is perfect for giving quick status updates across multiple social sources without having to start up several apps. Enticing, yes?