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Shopping App Review: Grocery Smarts

30 October 2014   Lynne LaMaster
Shopping App Review: Grocery Smarts 

App: Grocery Smarts Coupon Shopper

Developer: Bryan Hadlock

Compatibility: iOS 7.0 or higher. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch.There is also an Android version.

Website: GrocerySmarts.com

If you recall, I explained last week that we weren’t going to continue presenting the chart which compares grocery ads in our 'On Sale This Week' column, because there are a lot of apps for that. We will, however, review a different shopping app each week. As a matter of fact, we're spinning that column off on it's own, and you are reading it right now!

Before we get started, though, it's time for brutal honesty. This app is the ugliest app I’ve ever seen on an iPhone. Sigh, where is Jony Ives and his sense of design and elegance when you need him? Quite a bit bugs me about this app:

  • The ads are placed awkwardly and get in the way. And the full screen ones pop up all the time, which are incredibly annoying. I wish I could buy the app for a couple of bucks and have it be ad-free. And even if I download the app they’re pushing, it still shows me the same ad.
  • If you’re using an iPhone, you have to use panoramic view. On an iPad, you can use either the Portrait or Panoramic view.
  • It’s not intuitive or very easy to figure out. If you have questions, though, click on the ‘Help’ button, and it provides a fair amount of guidance.
  • I couldn’t get the list to work for me at first, but now it seems to be ok. But, the app is just buggy.
  • Albertsons doesn’t work. But, I don’t think that’s the app, because I’ve not been able to get Albertsons to work in other apps, either.

Now that I’ve gotten that out of my system, Grocery Smarts has some very cool features. Features that are so awesome, I'm willing to grit my teeth through the flaws and leave it on my devices. 

So, let’s take a look. 

Here’s your first screen (ugly, right?):

Click on “Create New List” and it takes you to where you choose your state and then you can choose your store. Remember, Albertsons doesn’t work, but the others do. 

This next screen is where the awesome part occurs. The entire ad for the store is loaded into the app. Plus it matches the available coupons to the sale items. 

It adds up what you’re planning to spend, so there are no surprises. Then it adds in the value of the coupons, so you know your bottom line. If you are a coupon person, or even someone just wanting to know what is on sale. 

This app does not compare store to store, but it is a great tool for getting the best bargains, and planning in advance. It’s free (thus the ads) so I’d certainly say it’s worth checking out. (ha! A little shopping lingo there!) The website is quite helpful: http://www.grocerysmarts.com

Rating: This app needs work and refinement. I don't mind ads, but they should not interfere as much as these do. I'd be quite willing to pay a few bucks for an ad-free version. It would be awesome if it could compare products side by side, too. The companion website is helpful, but I found the app to be buggy. So, I give it 3/5 Shopping Carts, but I'd sure love to bump that up someday when some of these things are addressed.