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Summary:

If you read this blog, and if you work primarily online, then chances are you’ve used your fair share of web applications. My own legion of web apps cycle in and out of active use depending on my mood, what type of project I’m working on, […]

unwrapplogoIf you read this blog, and if you work primarily online, then chances are you’ve used your fair share of web applications. My own legion of web apps cycle in and out of active use depending on my mood, what type of project I’m working on, and which new apps have just been released. All in all, managing and keeping track of all the apps I use requires a web app of its own, and that’s just what Unwrapp does.

Unwrapp is currently in beta, but you can sign up easily from their homepage, and hope for an invite code to follow. It took quite a while to receive mine, but the developers are hoping to release a version for wide public use soon. It can’t come soon enough for me, since I can’t even remember the names of all the web apps I was using last month, let alone be expected to check back and see if they’ve received any significant updates.

picture-5My first impressions of Unwrapp were positive, owing to the app’s gorgeously designed user interface. Mac users will feel at home thanks to the site’s simple yet visually rich styling. And it doesn’t hurt that the default avatar I was assigned when I chose not to upload my own was Darth Vader. Sure beats the generic Twitter pic!

You need an avatar because Unwrapp is more than just an application tracking site. It also incorporates aspects of social networking. These features aren’t fully implemented yet, but you can see the reviews of other users, and use their opinions to decide whether or not a particular app is worth your while. You can also view the profiles of other users, and, if you trust their opinion, maybe find new apps by checking out the list of what they use.

picture-6Unwrapp’s directory of apps is pretty good, and it includes most of the biggies like Google, but they depend on user submissions for finding many new and more obscure apps.

When it eventually does release to the public, I’d advise web app developers to make listing among their launch priorities, since with public buy-in, Unwrapp could do a lot of your PR legwork for you. That’s especially true for when you release revisions and updates. It can be quite a chore convincing media outlets to cover an app they’ve already seen just because you’ve introduced some new features. With Unwrapp, your updates get some much-needed exposure. New updates are posted in a persistent notification box on the right-hand side of any Unwrapp page when you’re logged in. Clicking on any app listed in that box brings you to a list of all of that app’s updates and feature additions since its inclusion in Unwrapp’s database.

picture-7Every app profile also includes a list of other, similar applications in case you’re shopping around for a better alternative, or want to go to a client with a number of different options for consideration. Unwrapp will eventually feature “The Charts” if you’re in the mood for browsing for something new, which will feature app ranking. And of course, you can search by keyword or browse the directory by category if you feel more like digging around.

Sign-up for the beta is free, although if you don’t have an invitation code, you might not get priority acceptance. But if you’re a fan of Go2Web20 or other web app directories and search services, Unwrapp is definitely worth signing up for, especially for its social networking features. We’ll let you know when the full release become officially available.

Have you tried Unwrapp? What did you think?

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  1. What to read on the GigaOM Network Thursday, April 2, 2009

    [...] apps for the Palm Pre (jkOnTheRun) Cable execs say web video is their friend (NewTeeVee) Unwrapp: Help for the web app-addicted (WebWorkerDaily) Reid, Pickens and Podesta to Obama: Make way for a national grid (Earth2Tech) [...]

  2. Wakoopa, application tracking « Learn and forget Thursday, April 2, 2009

    [...] I was inspired to write this after reading Darrell’s Unwrapp: Help for the Web App-addicted on Web Worker [...]

  3. Looking forward to trying this. Looks down at the minute.

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