ROM unveils new iPhone app
The ROM has joined the AGO in releasing a free iPhone app that serves as a guide to the museum's collection and facilities. In terms of the latter, it does its job quite well. Hours of operation, ticket prices, museum maps, and three audio guides to the permanent collection are laid out in an intuitive, easy to read manner and provide the core information that a prospective visitor might care to check up on. Current exhibition information is also mostly easy to acquire via the "What's On" section, though it'd be nice if this was presented in list form in addition to the calendar format.
Where the app comes up short is in its guide to the collection. Not only is some of the photography on the amateur side, but the selection of art and artifacts is woeful. Whereas the AGO features almost 1000 works in its mobile collection guide, I count less than 50 on the ROM's. While not everyone is going to use the app to browse the collection, it'd be nice to see this substantially beefed up for both educational and entertainment purposes. I'm sure we can expect some of these updates in a future release as its typical for version 1 of most iPhone apps to not be fully baked.
In the absence of additional pieces to look at, the app is left to serve a mostly pragmatic purpose (save for the audio guides), which for the most part is fine â just a bit on the boring side.
The ROM's iPhone app can be downloaded from the iTunes store. No word yet if and when it will be made available on other platforms.
Update (August 22nd): The ROM has informed us that this app is a test version that's been released for feedback prior to the official launch.
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