In a world that bombards us with things to do, it can be tough to stay on top of everything we think is worth checking out. Movies we want to see, music to listen to, books to read, restaurants to try, and places to go, there's just so much to do and almost no central way to keep track of all of this. You can use a simple list app, like Google Keep for example, but where's the fun in that? Now there's a new way to stay on top of your bucket list: Soon.
The app, which has been available on iOS for a while, is sort of a smart list maker. It reminds me of the now-defunct SpringPad in a way, but with a more modern approach. Soon isn't the first app of its genre on Android (Woovly is similar, but focuses on travel and restaurants), though it seems to be the most elegant so far. I'm sure some of you will lament the white theme of the app, but it's not something I personally mind.
Upon creating an account (no Google login, sigh), you'll be taken to the main homescreen with the different types of lists you can make: movies, TV series, music, books, restaurants, bars, stores, museums, hotels, cafes, places, games, and podcasts. Each one has a handy search feature plus suggestions of trending items. Once you add a few things, you can see them in the Soon tab and mark them as done. It's all quite straightforward, and the main appeal here is that details of each item are automatically populated (image, info, relevant links, etc...).
There's also a special section dedicated to City Lists, where you can add the things you want to do in a city and invite friends to collaborate. It's a little annoying that the other types of lists can only be shared but not collaborated on.
Soon also helps you with discovery thanks to a Trending section with items in every category as well as curated topic-centric lists from other users.
Finally, there's obviously a social element to Soon, and the app lets you follow friends, see their activity, share yours, and more.
Overall, I find the idea behind Soon really awesome, but the app could do with a little improvement. Currently, I track my movies/shows in Series Guide, I have a "to listen" playlist in Spotify, plenty of place lists in Google Maps, restaurants in Zomato, several notes in Keep, and so on. Soon has the potential to replace many of these, if not all, but it would take a lot of time to populate my lists again from scratch. Localization seems a little limited too, as I can't find many recommendations around me in Lebanon. Maybe the service needs more local users to become more interesting in that regard. Plus, the lack of Google login, and collaboration on all types of lists — except cities — is annoying.
And finally, there's the question of longevity. Whenever a service like this launches, with so much potential to be all-encompassing and awesome, I am wary of investing my time to personalize it only for it to shut down and leave me with another data transition session. Maybe my years of covering apps and services have made me more pragmatic, but what happened with SpringPad taught me not to put all my eggs in the same basket.
Now don't get me wrong, Soon is quite good and worth checking out. But whether or not you use it as your main bucket list app is something only you can decide.
Alternate title: Soon to launch on Android today