This year, we have added a new group of categories:
In-App Campaigns
For advertisers that use apps as a key element of their marketing campaigns. Entrants in these categories will be judged by their creativity and success in leveraging mobile’s unique opportunities.


Early Bird Rates End on March 15th at Midnight

Get Appy News and Featured App Reviews

CCFA's GI Buddy 

The Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America's "GI Buddy" app for iPhone allows those living with an inflammatory bowel disease to better manage their symptoms and treatment. The app, which is a free iPhone download and also available via Web on your desktop, allows users to track their symptoms, interact with message boards that feature topics relevant to the disease, and generate reports based on the information input, among other features. The message boards include topics for young adults, women, symptom management, surgery, emotional wellness and treatments. Each topic has many threads where users can interact with and add to the discussions. One of the most interesting and useful features, however, is the reports section. Here, users can find a detailed daily log to take to their physician that includes information about how the user was feeling, what activities they had participated in and what they were eating on a certain day. There aren't many downsides to this helpful app, but they are worth pointing out. "GI Buddy" doesn't seem to be completely iPhone optimized -- there is no way to zoom in on message boards. Another frustrating feature is that the app is fixed vertically. Without the ability to zoom in on a topic or turn your device horizontally, users may find the technology slightly lacking. Overall, the app is a great tool for people living with Crohn's and colitis that should help users better organize their symptoms to manage their disease. Get the app here:

Proposal Pro 

I've been seeing their commercials on TV for weeks -- this 100+-year-old company is officially on my radar -- and probably that of everyone else in the NY area. Helzberg Diamonds has made their presence known just in time for Valentine's Day, the helpful holiday that reminds men to be romantic (and maybe some women too!). In the romance reminder category, Helzberg also created a FREE iPhone app the "Proposal Pro" to help plan the perfect proposal. Being a newlywed, I decided to test this out to see how it compared to my now husband's proposal. The app stacks up pretty well from a female's perspective. It includes a timeline for choosing the date, the ring (I'll take one of each, thanks!), getting the blessing of the parents, finding the right location (powered by Yelp), a proposal generator and the ability to share the news by connecting with Facebook (because of course she'll say yes after you did all of this work). This little helper also features a learning section to understand more about different ring types, the 4c's of diamonds, starting prices, and a store locator. This app is straightforward, easy to use, provides great information and a cool integration with Yelp -- the use of Facebookconnect is also a nice touch because it makes sense! I was also surprised because the proposal generator came up with some short and sweet proposals that I think any gal would be happy to hear. While I thought my husband's proposal to me was perfect, if he used this app to do plan it, I would have never been the wiser! Available in the App

Great News!! 

hAPPY Friday! Great news, the APPY Deadline has been extended until February 15th!! You have an extra two weeks to up your chances of winning a trophy at SXSW! BUT -today is the last day to SAVE $50 on each entry, so get going & good luck!!

Forever 21 

Who needs a schmancy fashion mag, when you can download the FREE Forever 21 app from the iTunes Store (available for both iPhone & iPad). Clearly 1 million fashionistas have seen the light! Fashion lovers can swipe their way through beautiful glossy editorial photos in the "lookbook" section curated by the company's top stylists. These looks (and more, of course!) can be purchased online via the app's interface or in store (via the store locator function). The super social user can go the extra mile and enter the barcode of their favorite F21 tog and share it out with friends on their favorite social network. The app also pulls in content from the Forever 21 blog, which includes some great Instagram snaps, interviews with fashion bloggers, runway news (for big budgets too!) and fashion trends. Deals and customer exclusives are offered via push messages. Every time a unique message is deployed, a 500% increase in traffic is seen on the Forever 21 shopping experience. Rated 4.5 stars in the App Store, the Forever 21 app boasts over 2000+ reviews from fans calling the app their "favorite fashion app" and an "easy shopping experience." The app itself is free, the clothes are not (but we can dream, right?). Available in the App Store

YP - Local Search & Gas Prices App 

Sure you may be able to find your dentist's phone number 87 different ways using your smart phone or tablet, but can you find a the best gas prices nearby and then plot the most efficient way to get there?? Probably not unless you have downloaded the FREE YP - Local Search & Gas Prices App. In case you didn't realize, YP is the modernized name for Yellow Pages. Thank you rebranding. This app brings the Yellow Pages into the the modern world. In addition to finding the best gas prices, you can search for local businesses, restaurants, bars, theaters, etc. The app itself organizes over 18 million local business profiles neatly in an easy to access way. The app furthers the opportunity for savings beyond just gas prices, it also provides information on local deals. Users can find the deals they like, save them within the app and be reminded about the deal's expiration. How many times have we all let an awesome Groupon deal for chocolate underwear filled with bees slip away, just because we have ADD and forgot! This will never happen with the YP app - and since these deals are local they are WAY more relevant.   Available in the App Store

ColorStrokes HD for iPad 

ColorStrokes HDIn 24 hours I will be laid out and down for the count. Many Americans will join me, tryptophan-stuffed and glassy-eyed, deciding whether to brave Black Friday or ride it out on the couch. If you choose the couch, I have an app for that. ColorStrokes HDYou're patiently working your way through the holiday season, but family and friends have gathered, food has been devoured, and the children are running amok. It feels like millions of photos have been taken - of the food, the family and the pets, so now what? Enter the holiday savior ColorStrokes HD for iPad and iPad mini. While your Uncle Bob is comatose on the couch, open the app, snap a pic of him, then start editing. The entire rainbow is available for you to draw, shade and doodle on your photo. Add colors, effects like sepia or soft light, and adjust the size of your brushstrokes. When your uncle comes to, you can show him your one-of-a-kind, original Thanksgiving masterpiece that features his glistening drool and turkey wattle. ColorStrokes HDThe app is so easy to use that the fun should be shared. Pass the iPad to the kids and let them edit the photo of Granny bent over and half way in the oven. You can take photos through the app, upload existing photos, or login to Facebook and use that photo of your dog that everyone is sick of looking at, but you refuse to backdown that Tuxford is most certainly cuter than Boo, and just because Boo is better trained to take a photo, that doesn't mean he's actually more photogenic.....but I digress. After you've perfected your photo, send it as a postcard, upload it to Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Flickr...or click print for an old fashioned kind of holiday memory. ColorStrokes HD rings in at $1.99, but we all know funny photos and laughs with family and friends are priceless. Happy coloring. Available in the App Store


Anyone who's shopped at the Apple Store knows how wonderfully convenient it is for the customers and staff that the sales people can process your credit card right there in the middle of the store with a device attached to their iPhones. No lines, no hassle. Select what you want and even the receipt is emailed to you. No paper. No mess. Imagine that same convenience extended beyond the boundaries of a brick and mortar store and unlimited by type of phone. Pay Anywhere gives you that flexibility and more. The card reader is smaller than the Apple Store's and sleeker than Square's and available for iPad, iPhone, Android and Blackberry. Getting started is a cinch. The folks at Pay Anywhere will set up your merchant account for you for free. You just pay 2.69% per swipe, a notch lower than the going rate at Square. Now you're ready to accept credit cards right at the tables in your restaurant, or out front right next to cars at your carwash, or in the middle of a vacant lot at the local flea market. Literally anywhere. App features include commitment-free pay-as-you-go pricing; GPS; compatibility with cash drawers and thermal printers; text- and photo-based inventory; detailed receipt emails; built-in reporting of sales trends with "Heat Maps"; and a free merchant portal for detailed account activity - all directly within the app itself. No need to log into a remote Web site to get important sales data. It's a feature-rich sales app that truly takes credit card processing on-the-go to a whole new, well, place, literally any place. //

My Life as a Refugee by Artifex Creative Webnet 

My Life as a
RefugeeThe irony does not escape me. I'm sitting on my couch, petting my pomeranian and watching the Olympics while yelling at Bob Costas. Cradled between my dog and a bowl of homemade chicken salad sit various Apple products. I use the iPhone for tweeting my disgust for Bob, the MacBook for reading the occasional email and an iPad for downloading apps and playing games. My Life as a RefugeeThis seems like an average day for most Americans. But it's ironic because I'm playing with the 'My Life as a Refugee' app from United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees - the UN Refugee Agency, all while snuggled under my plush blanket from Brookstone with air conditioner well below 68 degrees. It's a rough life in the first world. But let's get serious, because life and death decisions do happen in this world, and the plight of refugees is not funny. My Life as a RefugeeCoinciding with the UNHCR's launch of the '1 is Too Many' campaign, 'My Life as a Refugee' takes an innovative approach to bring awareness to the awful situations refugees endure. In order to understand the issues refugees contend with, three unique stories were designed based on actual experiences. For players to empathize with the life of a refugee, they have to become one. Players begin the game by selecting a character: Merita - pregnant and in the center of a civil war; Paulo - 15 years old and forced to become a child solider; and Amika - a young mother speaking out for women's rights. By virtually living these roles, the player is faced with making the same decisions that these individuals encounter in war-torn, poverty-stricken countries. So, I'm Merita. Married, seven months pregnant with my third child, and...damn, now a widow as soon as I push the "Let's get started" button. My husband was shot and killed and now I have two kids and my mother to care for. I start freaking out from the pressure with only 30 seconds to make the first decision. The scenario unfolds like a Choose Your Own Adventure book, and flashing back to my childhood, I immediately regret each choice and wish I could flip back one page. My Life as a RefugeeNow Merita and her son (we lost my daughter and mother along the way) are in a refugee camp after bribing a guide and sneaking across the border. I'm hungry, pregnant and scared as hell. Do I wait in line for food or go to the clinic? Let's try our luck in the clinic...but I don't make it because I faint on my way there. Fast forward three months and I've given birth to a son. I'm still living in a tent, and now I need to decide whether to leave the camp to start a new life, or wait in hopes of returning home someday. I choose to start a new life in the city. Although with a newborn and a young son, I'm torn, and it takes time for me to commit to the decision and push the button on my high-res screen. This is when I, the real I, realize the app has me immersed in Merita's life, and the decisions that take me a few nail-biting minutes were choices she made once. In her real life. I find work in a sweatshop. An authority figure asks to see my papers (which I forgot to take with me when I left my home in a hurry and grabbed "food and water"). I don't speak the language. I'm deported to the border. I'm arrested and jailed for life. And that's the end of Merita's story. What? That's how my life story ends? I change my mind. I will remember my papers. I will hide in the woods. I will stay in the refugee camp. I will not let go of my daughter's hand. But this is no game, and a video message by Angelina Jolie at the end of each scenario reinforces this message, and discusses the reality of the current state of affairs. Links to donate, learn more, start a new scenario and share on social media end the app's experience, but in reality it is just the beginning, or the continuation of what has been for generations. Now, as I might have mentioned earlier, the paradox of role-playing a refugee through my iPad is...ironic. But I'm not so dysfunctionally spoiled that I don't learn something here. The free app is available for iPhone and iPad, and it is worth a download. Parents with rotten kids? Make them play. Your dreadlocks are drenched in patchouli? Share with your friends. Wall Street finance guy with no time for anything but Wall Street and finance? Your loss. But if we all play this simulation once, at the very least we'll be more aware of the plight of refugees around the world, and that seems to be the honorable goal of UNHCR. Available in the App Store

LEGO(R) Super Heroes Movie Maker 

LEGOEver make one of those "flip the corners of the pages of your notebook" movies? With a sprinting stick-man, or a swimming stick-woman who gets eaten by a shark? Me too! And I used to play with LEGOs - all the time. Man, the kids today have it made! If you're into movie-making, DC super heroes and LEGOs, get ready for the perfect storm of awesomeness... LEGOLEGO Super Heroes Movie Maker is a free app (free! what a deal!) that gives you most of the tools you'll need to make super-cute, super-cool, super-creative stop-motion movies on your iPhone. Check out this two minute video for a best case scenario look at what you can do. I say "best case scenario" because once you fool around with the app a bit, you'll realize there's no way the kid in the video made that little Batman vs. the Joker montage. At the very least, he'd need a tripod, the hands of a surgeon and unprecedented juvenile patience. Lacking super hero LEGO actors and a LEGO backdrop, I tested the app by making a short film of my pen moving across a sheet of paper. I positioned the pen, snapped a photo, repositioned the pen, snapped another, and repeated six times. Worked perfectly, and it was easy to add titles and cool music. Without a tripod though, you won't be able to keep your frame perfectly straight (the sole advantage of the "flip the corners" method). A minor quibble, but important to point out. Spielberg started with super 8. It's not hard to imagine the blockbuster directors of tomorrow starting with the LEGO Super Heroes Movie Maker. Enjoy! Available in the App Store

Star Walk for iPad by Vito Technology Inc. 

Your Fantastic
Elastic BrainGoogle's Project Glass still seems light years away, and while there are many other augmented reality mobile apps out there, most fall short on the promise of a helpful heads-up display experience. Vito Technology's Star Walk for iPad is a refreshing exception in this field. After playing with it for about a week, it is now my new favorite star-gazing app as well as the new go-to app when I want to show off what the iPad is capable of. Your Fantastic Elastic BrainThe Star Walk app is full of cool features, yet easy to navigate. It launches with a comprehensive 'Sky Live' screen which shows the sunrise and sunset times, phases of the Moon, and visibility and elevation angles of Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn. You can change the current date to the previous or next day with the arrow buttons, and as you cycle through the days, you can see the Moon phases and the information for the other objects featured on the screen change as well. Once you close this view, the app takes you right to the beautiful live sky view synchronized to your location and time of day.Your Fantastic Elastic BrainThe live augmented reality view adds color-coded labels next to nearly all visible stars, galaxies and nebulae, and identifies major constellations and over 8,000 satellites as you point your iPad at them. You can drag and move the sky around manually and zoom in and out with a pinch of your fingers, or tilt and turn the iPad itself to have the screen view follow your line of sight using iPad's gyroscopes and compass. The graphics quality is outstanding, and there are many intricate visual details that hint at how much work went into making of this app. For example, when one object crosses over or near another, it actually casts a shadow on it. The Sun itself casts a halo or rays and realistic concentric lens flairs which move and change as you move the iPad, a beautiful touch. But the two features that made this app stand out from other similar offerings are the Night Mode and the Detailed Info view. The Night Mode is priceless when you are trying to locate any dim object in the dark sky while looking down at the iPad's brightly lit screen. With the Night Mode turned on, the entire interface turns dark monochrome red, making it a lot easier for the eyes to adjust to the low light conditions. The Detailed Info is another feature sorely missing from other astronomy apps, and it allows you to pull up a detailed fact sheet about any star, satellite, nebula or galaxy by simply tapping on it on the screen, providing a link to a Wikipedia article with more information. Other useful features include a Twitter-based 'Star Walkers' community, a Calendar of upcoming significant astronomical events, and an ability to save as Bookmarks any of the celestial objects you locate with the app. Overall, Star Walk is a visually gorgeous, simple and powerful application that will provide hours of educational fun for any amateur astronomer, and is well worth the $4.99 price. Available in the App Store