The best of ride sharing, food delivery, podcasting, and seltzers.
Hello, welcome to Part I of Emily's product roast where I'll be putting commonly used apps against each other and telling you why one is better than the other ☺️
1. Ride Sharing Apps: Uber vs. Lyft
Uber is trash, team Lyft all the way. I've almost always had laggy experiences on Uber and they have literally no delightful features. Their UI looks like a wireframe. Lyft's overall interface is more friendly and the map is more familiar (looks more like a Google or Apple Map) and they have tasteful haptic feedback. They also have thoughtful features like lowering the volume of your music when you open the app and your ride is approaching, and really cute animations when you provide feedback during a ride.
2. Food Delivery Apps: Grubhub vs. Doordash vs. Postmates
Postmates is trash for the same reasons Uber is trash. I've actually just deleted my account entirely (not just the app!). I once had an order that I straight up did not receive. Very odd.
Grubhub is pretty good, it's been my go-to lately but I think Doordash is actually superior here. Grubhub feels a bit manual and slow--it takes a few more taps to do the same things in Doordash (e.g. filters, ordering food by category, viewing orders, etc.). The UI is pretty similar between the two...they both feel kind of bubbly (?) and both are reliable. So both solid apps.
3. Social Media Apps: Facebook vs. Instagram vs. Twitter
I know Facebook owns Instagram, but we're just looking at the product this time (not the business side). Facebook is so irrelevant I don't even want to go into it. The only value it provided me in the past 4 years was school club groups and school-related events, so I've deleted it off my phone and rarely check it anymore.
Instagram vs. Twitter: I know they serve different purposes (photos vs. short snippets of text) but I think Instagram is overall less clunky and easier to use. Posting a photo and tweeting a tweet are both pretty easy. But I'd argue that posting a carousel of photos is far easier than tweeting a thread. Has anyone noticed the different ways that threads can appear on a feed or profile? What's the difference between a thread and a reply? Why do things looks differently if you retweet with and without a comment? Also what are Twitter "Topics"? Twitter loses here because it's hard to use.
* Disclaimer: I've used Instagram for years and I've been on Twitter for 8 months so that's probably why I struggle but still...
4. Dating Apps: Tinder vs. Bumble vs. Hinge
The first time I used Tinder was January 2017...and at the time it was easy enough to use. I downloaded Bumble some time in late 2017 I think...and that was also easy to use. But because Bumble had more prompts on profiles, and I think because most people on Bumble were less uh, horny, I had more fun conversations on Bumble. My first time on Hinge was during the summer of 2019 and that was actually really hard to use at first. But once I got used to the gestures, I really really liked it. I had some good conversations and even went on a date!
I do want to point out that I was on Hinge as a senior in college, not as a freshman and I realize that people have different intentions on different apps...but I think if you are looking to find a SO, Hinge is your best bet because of their unique experience (it's not blind matching and they've got better incentives to engage in conversations). But Bumble has the best UI/UX.
5. Email Clients: Gmail vs. Outlook
Not even going to mention other email clients because they're not relevant. Outlook honestly isn't relevant either but I think it's worth sharing with all my fellow G suite users just how BAD Outlook is.
DID YOU KNOW THAT OUTLOOK PEOPLE GET ADS IN THEIR INBOX?? How rude. I was so offended when I accidentally clicked on one and I got taken to a new tab.
The actual UX of both email clients are pretty similar but Microsoft is still the worst option here because it's really unclear how to use all of O365 with your Outlook email. Do you get OneDrive and the other cloud stuff? SharePoint? What even is SharePoint? Their suite of apps is super complex and hard to understand. idk.
6. Mobile Email Clients: Gmail vs. Superhuman
I've been a big fan of Superhuman even before I started using it about 7 months ago. But I have a lot of qualms with their iOS app. Their notifications are whack and some of their gestures are really unintuitive and I think Superhuman is just not meant for a smol screen. Gmail's app still feels clunky to me but I have it downloaded on my phone so I can receive all the push notifications I need. I originally started this workflow as a temporary solution but it's actually working for me quite nicely so it's sticking for now.
7. Design Tools: Sketch vs. Figma
I'm not a designer, but I've dabbled a bit in both apps and frankly I still don't understand why you would use Sketch over Figma. I've heard an argument that Sketch has more plug-in's...but I don't think you need those if you're on Figma. I've used Sketch with 4 other tools on top of it for the sake of sharing/exporting files and prototyping...all things you can do natively in Figma.
TL;DR Sketch is outdated and does not encourage collaboration whatsoever. Use Figma. It just makes everyone's lives easier.
8. Podcasts: Spotify vs. Apple Podcasts
I've used Apple Podcasts a few times, each session lasting less than 3 minutes because I can never figure out how it works. Libraries are not intuitive at all because tapping into a show displays "My Episodes"? None of which I've saved. I also don't know how to see all the episodes of a show. I just opened the app and I looked at Downloaded episodes and I can't remove them. Help my storage is full. And now it's crashed on me.
Spotify podcasts are generally better all-around on mobile (the podcast experience on the desktop app is questionable). On mobile, I can save/like/favorite shows and see a chronological view of new episodes. I can also easily tap into a show to view all of their previous episodes. It's easy to see what I've listened to and get updates from my favorite shows.
9. Flavored Seltzers: La Croix vs. Bubly
I love bubbly things and I love grapefruit-flavored drinks so I only ever get Pamplemousse La Croix and Grapefruit Bubly. The verdict: they taste the same. La Croix is just associated with tech trash, so naturally, I keep Bubly in my fridge.
10. Spiked Seltzers: White Claw vs. Bon & Viv vs. Truly
Again, I love bubbly things and I love grapefruit-flavored drinks so I only ever really drink grapefruit spiked seltzers. These all kind of taste the same to me too, but the real difference is in the branding and what kind of person reaches for each can:
White Claw: frat stars, college kids, tech bro's
Bon & Viv: art hoe aesthetics, Trader Joe's shoppers
Truly: older party animals who got to the spiked seltzer party a little late, Costco die hards
So there you have it, 10 takes on 10 categories of products. Up next is a deep and thorough analysis of Google Maps vs. Apple Maps. Stay tuned.