APP OF THE DAY: Song Pop review (iPad / iPhone / iPod touch / Android)

Draw Something has a lot to answer for. Not only do we now find ourselves nudged more often than a builder's arm on mini-skirt Monday, thanks to having grown tired of playing it about a week after we started (something it shares with Tiny Tower, Angry Birds and many others), but it's also spawned a swathe of clones, each offering a variation on a theme.

However, not all of them are bad. And some even try hard to break the overall formula, if not the graphical style. And anyway, wasn't Draw Something just Words with Friends that took away the competitive element?

Thank the heavens somebody's put that bit back in...

Song Pop

Format
iPad (version tested), iPhone, iPod touch, Android
Price
Free
Where
iTunes, Google Play

Song Pop is a pop quiz app, and therefore one of thousands. What's different with Song Pop though is that not only does it take the turn-based structure of Draw Something, but it uses licensed music instead of long-winded text questions.

It was released earlier this month on several platforms, including iOS, Android and as a Facebook application, and while it has slipped under the radar of many, it will almost definitely take the crown from its clearest inspiration as the app of the moment.

In actuality, it's simpler than Draw Something. You compete against, rather than work with, friends either challenged through a Facebook logon, email or via the app itself. You then get to choose a category of music you'd like the questions to be drawn from.

These can vary, from 80s Classics, to Love Songs, to Modern Day Rap, and it is then your turn to guess the correct multiple-choice answer based on the clip of music you hear. Obviously, it's important that you get each of the five clips right, but speed is also of the essence as the quicker you answer correctly, the more points you get.

Then your opponent gets to play the exact same round, trying to beat your overall score. It's fun and frenetic and doesn't take more than a couple of minutes at a time.

Whoever wins the round gets a point and the choice of category alternates. Thankfully, even if you do really badly (as we did against our chum and ex-Food Records A&R guy Miles Jacobson OBE - he of Football Manager fame), each game is reset after a week. The server counts down so you know how long you have left to play.

As with a lot of games of this ilk, such as Sing Something, while the application is free to download and play, you can spend real money in buying extras, such as the ability to reduce the number of answers on a trickier clip. However, we find that you have so little time before an opponent is likely to guess, that even massaging the odds could still see you lose the round.

But developer FreshPlanet has to make money somewhere. It certainly deserves to, as its creation is as addictive as lottery scratchcards. And ironically, just as likely to make you swear out loud on the Tube.