IMDb Android app update brings major redesign, trailers, global showtimes, and more
The redesign is very sleek. They've basically taken the original palette and layout, expanded it all, and turned up the sexy. As nice as it looks though, the biggest thing I noticed was that everything about the app is blazingly fast. It's so fast that it's a bit off-putting, because using IMDb.com has always felt to me like an exercise in extreme patience.
Movie trailers now take center stage, literally, which makes sense since they're one of the big reasons that people like going to IMDb in the first place. The fully revamped app makes trailers, and other media, a priority now with the very first screen you see a springboard for viewing trailers of upcoming and top new movies. The trailers themselves play better than I had anticipated, and like the rest of the app, they load quickly.
Between the design and the new features, including international movie showtimes, the app is extremely functional. I was able to sprint through several movies, TV shows, actors, and news stories in seconds -- which is far more than I can say for trying to load the website in a mobile browser.
There's also a news widget included in the update, which looks decent enough but only shows the top new story (and doesn't include any way to scroll for more). I could see a major movie buff using it to fill space on their home screen, but I wouldn't personally want to spend the memory to display a single story. The IMDb News feature itself, however, is nothing short of fantastic. It's very well-organized and extremely comprehensive (and multi-sourced), so it can definitely act as a one-stop shop for all the movie, TV, celebrity and Hollywood-centric news that most could want for.
Displaying galleries is lightening fast (signal permitting, of course), and I really liked how they went very no-frills with them -- a gallery is just a wall of thumbs. As pretty as they are, fancy scrolling 3D galleries are the bane of efficiency, so it's nice to see something kept simple. Because of the speedy-loading gallery, looking for that quick picture of Gary Busey takes a fraction of the time than it would have taken while using the website. Trying to justify your interest in a gallery of Gary Busey, on the other hand, may not be so quick or easy.
Another cool feature displays movie showtimes using your location, either automatically (set by GPS) or user-defined. You can find showtimes by film title or by venue not just in the US, but across the globe.
Overall, the app has become more or less capable of fulfilling most, if not all, of your average film buff's needs while out and about. At the very least, it's now far more capable of settling a bar stool debate in less than a minute, which is probably more relevant for most of us anyhow.
You can download the app at the Android Market, or hit up the QR code below for its page at AppBrain: