As a writer for CrackBerry.com, I download a lot of apps. All too frequently, I'll read a review here on the blog and immediately purchase the app. With Fixmo Tools, I didn't even finish the article. That's the power of reading a review from someone whose opinion you trust. Still, there are an incredible number of apps in the CrackBerry.com App Store; and it simply isn't possible to review them all.
It's these other apps that cause a bit of a conundrum. Apps are usually not free, and no one likes to pay money for a dud. In the before-time, sometimes the only reviews for an app were anonymous user reviews. Some were insightful and helpful. Others were not. Jumbled together in a mish-mash of anonymity, it was not always easy to get a clear idea of an app's potential.
Today, there's AppVerse. People know each other on AppVerse. Reviews link back to the author so you can see more by that person. You can follow people and be followed; find out what new apps are being reviewed by the people you know. Most importantly, AppVerse challenges people to write informative reviews. People can comment on your reviews. Folks can mark them as helpful or otherwise. When you review an app with AppVerse, it means something.
Writing a Review
AppVerse has a lot to offer, so let's begin at the beginning. Actually, signing up for AppVerse is the first step, but we'll save that for later. Once you've logged in to AppVerse, you should see a box in the upper right that looks like this. Clicking on "Unreviewed Purchases" will show a list of all your purchases without a review. If you're new to AppVerse, this will be all of your purchased Apps.
Find an app, and write a quick review. A sentence or two will do nicely (although there's no reason you can't write more). Your review will be read by people just like you trying to decide if the app is really worth the money. Go ahead and give a star rating, too. These get averaged with other users' ratings and displayed next to the app name at the top. Once your review and star rating are in, click submit to send it out into the AppVerse.
PRO TIP: Every time you write a review about a product, the developer gets it via email. In a pinch, you can use the "write a review" space to actually ask a question of the developer.
The days of the passive review have ended. Once your review is released into the wild of AppVerse, users can have at it. Folks can leave comments to your review. Did you do a great review? Did you forget an important detail? AppVerse users can and will let you know about it in the comments. Your readers can also ask you a question with the "Tell Me More" link. You'll get an email with their quick question and a link to leave a comment on your review.
In a speedier fashion, your readers can also quickly tag a review as Helpful, Not Helpful, Funny, or Spam. The more Helpful votes you receive, the higher your ranking on the AppVerse leaderboard.
Followers and Following
After getting some feedback on your review, you probably want to find a few people to follow. Each week, you'll get an email with a digest of all the apps your followed people reviewed. It's a great way to find popular apps you've missed and new apps you've never even heard of. Best of all, the reviews come from people you know and follow.
Finding people you know is easy; just click the big red button marked, "Find People." Then you can search for people by entering their AppVerse name, email, or even real name. Clicking the Follow button will - oddly enough - follow the person.
If you're looking for more people to follow, the same page offers suggestions on who you might consider following. You can also look to other people at the site to see who they are following. CrackBerry Kevin follows the bloggers and editors of CrackBerry.com, and so can you. From his profile page, you can click on the tabs (in the grey bar) to see who is following Kevin and who Kevin follows. Of course, this is the same for any user. There are times when you can find really good reviewers (and really good people) just by finding out who follows whom.
Your face to the world
AppVerse lets you control what information about you is available to the world. At the top of the "Your AppVerse" bar on the left side of the screen, you'll see your name. Next to that is a down arrow; clicking the arrow will open a menu of AppVerse places. At the top is the link for your AppVerse profile.
In your bio, include a little something of yourself. Let people know a tiny bit about you. You'll also have the option to include an avatar picture. From one reviewer to another, take a moment to choose a photo to represent yourself. A friendly image amongst a sea of colorful A's is certain to get a little attention.
Of course you can also control who can see your apps as well as the number of messages the program will send you.
Every once in a while, you may purchase an app that you might not want the world to know you have. Easy enough. In your "Unreviewed Apps," you can select "Don't show this purchase in AppVerse" for any app you wish. It's located two lines under the title of the app.
Becoming a part of AppVerse is incredibly simple. Just click the Log in or Join Now link. There you can create an account using your Facebook or Twitter login, use your existing CrackBerry AppStore login, or create an entirely new account. Each step is laid out with easy-to-follow instructions.
AppVerse is about empowering the user. You get honest reviews from people you know. You can find apps that you've missed or didn't know about. You have the ability to flag reviews as spam.
AppVerse is about making the review interactive. Through the site, you can send feedback and questions directly to the developer. Other users can comment and even ask questions about your review. Helpful posts can be tagged, and the users with the most helpful posts shoot to the top of the AppVerse Leaderboard.
Mostly, AppVerse is about you. It raises your voice to be heard. Heard by your friends and followers. Friends and followers who can comment on your reviews. Which makes you want to comment on their reviews. All resulting in a place where you matter.