App Reviewed: Cards
* The app itself is free, but you’ll have to pay $2.99 for US postal addresses and $4.99 for international postal addresses.
Cards App Review
Apple announced the introduction of the new Cards app, which will let you create and mail beautifully crafted, real greeting cards personalized with your own text and photos — right from your iPhone or iPod touch.
The Cards app is very similar to another existing app, Postage. Postage has been around for a few years now. On the surface, the apps are similar: Each allows you to choose a theme, add a photo, customize text, and send your finished creation off to someone else. Cards, however, is limited to sending letterpress cards through the mail, while Postage instead focuses exclusively on sending e-cards via the Internet. The biggest difference though is that: Postage feels like Apple developed it. Cards doesn’t.
You have the option to choose from 21 designs in 6 categories: Thank You, Holiday, Baby, Birthday, Love, and Travel. Chose your design and then customize your card with a personal message and photo. Then select a mailing address from your Contacts and place your order in seconds.
Once you choose your theme, it’s time to customize it. Each theme shows three tabs: Outside, Inside, and Envelope. In a clever touch, you can also tap on the envelope peeking out behind the card, or swipe up on the outside of the card to expose the inside, instead of navigating via the tabs.
The Cards app comes with location integration — If you select one of the Travel designs, your card automatically displays the name of your current location. Choose a photo with GPS data, and the card shows the name of the place where the photo was taken.
All your cards are saved automatically, so it’s easy to send an invitation or birth announcement to more than one person. Disappointingly, though, Cards offers no bulk sending discounts. Sending a single holiday card for $3 is fine; sending 20 for $60 is not so tempting, in my view. This makes it costlier than competitors like Snapfish, Shutterfly etc, though Apple’s cards are printed more fancily and on thicker stock.
Cards version 1.01 addressed a few issues of version 1, namely, improved verification of postal addresses and improvements to the checkout process as there were issues of cards not reaching the addresses ever or arrived several weeks later. And the checkout procedure was a deadly bore.
Cards is OK, but as I said, if you have the option to send an e-Card instead, use Postage. I might use Cards once in a while for US domestic postal addresses or maybe a couple of times a year for international addresses, but as things stand now — Cards is not something I’m excited about. Absence of an iPad version also did not help much.
How to get the Cards app
Get it from the iTunes Appstore