Interest Level: Intermediate, Young Adult
Devices Used: Android Nexus 5
Platforms Available: Apple, Android
Developer: Pocket Points, Inc.
Pocket Points is a free app designed to incentivize staying off cell phones at school. After downloading, the student enters the name of their school, and if that school is offered as an option (there are schools listed nationwide), the app uses GPS tracking to determine if the student is on campus when the app is in use. If this is the case, the student simply starts the app before class begins, then locks their phone. The app logs a certain amount of points per minute the phone is not in use and stops logging once the phone is opened again. These points can then be used to gain discounts, rewards, and coupons at both local and online businesses.
The app has a very user-friendly interface. To encourage fairness, points cannot be logged unless the user is on their selected school’s property. It is easy to pull up the app, verify how many points you have, and see which local businesses are partnered to find good prizes. Though the quality and quantity of the discounts vary according to each business’s discretion, there are many options available for reasonable point values. To use the points you simply show your totals to the cashier and allow them to deduct points by hitting the “approve” button on the app’s interface. For more competitive students, the app also includes challenges and awards for achieving points a certain number of days in a row. Due to these options and the app’s ease of use, it is a quick and fun way to encourage less distraction and more productivity in the classroom for any student who has a cell phone. Schools and businesses interested in partnering with Pocket Points can sign up through their website.
*No in-app purchases available, but online store websites can be accessed through the app.