UPDATE 6/25: The app has rebranded as Scope and looks better than ever. I might do an updated review at some point, but then again Dieter at The Verge has given it a run over with more pics & vids than you can shake a Galaxy Nexus at.
At this point, most people who had a BlackBerry have ditched it and never looked back. If anything, most have missed a few features, such as the excellent keyboard or the ease of BBM. For me, the thing I missed most when making the switch to Android was SocialScope, the Swiss Army Knife of social apps. You may remember Chad’s excellent review of that app way back in October 2010, where I got a shout-out on the No Limit blog even before I had taken the job. This post will be sort of a spiritual successor to that, now that an early Android build has been out for a few months now and gone through a few iterations.
On the whole, SocialScope is a pretty good looking app by my standards. The home screen is very Windows Phone 7-like with large tiles for jumping to various types of updates such as notifications, photos, videos, check-ins, and more. The feeds themselves are very cleanly laid out and readable.
One of the reasons it looks so attractive is the fact that it gives inline previews of basically any type of media and upload service you can throw at it. YouTube? Check. Native Twitter/Facebook/foursquare pics? Lockerz? Check (ugh). Instagram and Picplz? Double check. This app is a content consumer’s dream.
This app also supports a pretty solid list of networks. Twitter and Facebook are included of course, as well as foursquare and tumblr. What you may not expect to sign in to, but can, is Instagram. That’s right, read and (limited) write functionality are available for Instagram in this app. You can Like and comment on images in a dedicated stream, but unfortunately uploads are not supported. This can definitely hold me over until they come out with an actual Android app.
While there is plenty to get excited about, SocialScope for Android does suffer from a few bugs, as well as some feature omissions that made the BlackBerry app so great. It isn’t the most consistent at notifying you of mentions and DMs, at least in a timely manner. The app also tends to forget how to refresh and load the latest tweets. Some glaring omissions as far as features go are no multi-Twitter account support and no ability to post as a Facebook Fan Page. I’m sure those features are in the pipeline, but it’s worth mentioning.
Overall, I’m very optimistic about SocialScope for Android’s potential as a killer jack-of-all-trades social app. However, knowing how the app developers have operated over the last 3 or 4 years, I am not as optimistic about the amount of time it will take to reach that full potential, if at all. The app still has a way to go to be a daily driver for a large amount of people. For me, it was my go-to app on and off for about two months, but I’ve switched back to TweakDeck. That should tell you where the app stands for now.
If you want to give it a shot, leave a comment below or tweet me and I’ll hook you up with an invite!