Various charity app screenshots
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Posted by Linda

Hi everyone,

It's been a while so we thought it would be a good time to pick back up on our review of charity smartphone apps!

There's three more up for review this week that include apps from the cancer charity, Macmillan, The National Autistic Society and animal conservation charity, The Aspinall Foundation.

Macmillan - 'Coffee Mornings'

Asks for donations? Yes
Links to website donate form? N/A
Responsive giving forms? N/A
Text to donate? Yes
Has other monetisation? Yes, but we could only see the 'Text to donate on an auto-generated popover dialogue box.
Has native iPad version? No

When we opened this up the first thing that happened is a pop up appeared asking straight away for a donation of £3 by text message.

We also noticed that it hasn't been updated to reflect the larger screen size that the iPhones from version 5 offer.

When we first opened it we were also on the tube, and couldn't get to any content as it appears it needs an internet connection to pull in content.

Later, when we were home we tried again and.... We found that nothing would still load so we have to leave this review there unfortunately. We can only guess it needs an update or the charity have decided they don't want to keep developing it.

We did cover another app from Macmillan in an earlier blog, so perhaps they are now focussing their energy on this.

The National Autistic Society - 'Take Action'

Asks for donations? No
Links to website donate form? N/A
Responsive giving forms? N/A
Text to donate? No
Has other monetisation? No
Has native iPad version? No

Again, on opening, we noticed the app hasn't been updated to cater for the larger screensizes the newer iPhones offer.

It also needs connectivity to fulfil some of its functionality but we were able explore much of it while we were on the tube.

Apart from the news feed on the app home screen not being able to pull in news there are four big buttons that say:

  • Campaign now
  • What we do
  • Top tips
  • What's new

We decided to check this when we got home as the 'Campaign now' and 'What's new' buttons need connectivity to serve content.

Ok - instead of at home, on the way home we were back 'online' with a nice 4G connection and could see the content we couldn't access on the tube.

So, in the 'Campaign now' section it loads in a feed of (at the time or writing) 3 campaigner actions. These were around the Autism Act, keeping autism on the NHS agenda and to influence government reforms.

We clicked on one and were please to see a nice responsive action form load in to the phone screen. You have to put in a lot of personal details to take the action so this is a clever way (as well as having your chance to influence change) for the charity to get new supporters on their books with a view to further engagement and stewardship through the things the charity has to offer.

The 'What we do' section has a number of screens you can flip through that tells you all about the charity's aims and objectives and how they go about their work.

The 'Top tips' section give stacks of great information on how to become a campaigner yourself which will really appeal to those supporters who want to contribute to the furtherance of the charity's mission. Tips include how to use social media, how to write letters, how to meet influencers and generally get up and running with a well thought out and measurable campaign.

In the 'What's new' section there's a mix of latest news from charities and supports as well as an area you can view all the charity's press releases.

So over all this app is light on the fundraising and heavy on the news and campaigning that the charity does.

The Aspinall Foundation - 'Jigsaw Puzzle'

Asks for donations? Yes
Links to website donate form? Yes
Responsive giving forms? Yes
Text to donate? No
Has other monetisation? Yes, you pay to unlock more photos
Has native iPad version? Yes

When we opened this app the first thing we noticed is you have to change you orientation to landscape as the app only functions in this mode.

It is pleasing to see it had a version for the iPad too which is not something we see happen that much with charity apps which makes us worry that charities are not reaching as wide an audience as they could.

On the home screen the main invitation is to 'play' but there are also a few other options which are

  • Donate
  • Share
  • Information
  • Settings

The donate button takes you to their website and a responsive giving form. It is important charities do this rather than send to a native desktop giving form, so it is great to see this conservation charity have thought of that.

The 'share' button reveals two more icons that invite you to share on Facebook or Twitter.

When we selected the 'Information' button it unfortunately made the app crash on our iPhone so we were unable to see what was behind there.

The settings button let's you change the apps music and sound effect levels as well as restore any in-app purchases you might have made.

The main function of the app is then basically a fun jigsaw puzzle game with three free photos of gorilla jigsaw puzzles that you can also set different levels of difficulty for.

There are 8 more images that you can purchase within the app which is a nice monetisation touch. We will be back with the next instalment of our ongoing charity apps blog series soon. Learn more about supporting the Aspinal Foundation here.

Here's the older blogs

If you'd like to read them please do and we hope you enjoy them and please share if you find the information useful :)

 

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