Education is a big deal in the app arena and many developers are trying to get a piece of the pie. In some cases this is aimed at children and developing their knowledge but the more interesting apps tackle developing skills. Of course skill development isn’t just limited to kids (although the vast majority of adults won’t need major help developing their motor skills) and that is where brain training games and apps have stepped in.
Elevate is a new freemium app (currently just on iOS though coming to android soon) which aims to help you develop the skills which you are interested in.
What I Like
The first thing that will strike you about this beautiful app is…just that. It is beautiful, the design is clean and crisp featuring a minimal interface with bold colors in just the right places. The bold buttons for entering training modes are obvious and the only downside is the very discreet hamburger menu button in the top left. Once you click it the transition leads you to an obvious menu area so there is no confusion as to your location within the app.
One of the great stand out features of the app is the personalised training plans. When you first sign up, you are given a series of yes/no options over what skills to develop. Once you’ve selected the appropriate skills your daily games will be chosen based off those abilities you are seeking to develop.
Speaking of these training plans. You can track your progress and ability over time and see how you are improving at the different skills within the apps. This includes scores and percentage improvements but also streaks, which when tied into the reminders system really help to motivate you to continue training and improving.
Perhaps one of the greatest features of this app is that it is freemium done right. When I first noticed the app I saw that it has a monthly subscription free but that is only for the pro option. This option unlocks unlimited games within the app and costs $9.99 a month of $59.99 dollars for a year. If you don’t choose this option, then you are limited to only 3 games (which are selected for you) each day. Personally, that is more than enough for me.
What I Don’t Like
There are a couple of issues that I am unsure of with this app. The first is the premium upgrade price for the pro version. It’s a big increase for a year charge, I’m sure some people will pay it but I suspect more people (like me) would pay it if it was a single one off charge or a smaller subscription option. Still the develops have to make money.
I also wonder how personalised these plans are, I deliberately tried to avoid the speed reading activities because I’m not convinced that speed reading is the silver bullet many people make it out to be. For me, spending time dwelling on a word, sentence or point can be a very worthwhile endeavour. Yet, I found a speed reading activity was one of my first selected activities.
All in all this is a great light brain training app which covers a variety of different skills. The free version will add a great touch of “sharpening the axe” every day without becoming an overwhelming addictive beast, or the premium version will let you pass time on commutes in a productive and fun way.
Download it today.