Stamped is a great looking recommendation engine


I really take pride in sharing the apps and web services that I enjoy and use most often here on my site. Many of these services are better with friends, so it's only natural that I would want as many of mine to partake as possible. Stamped falls into this category. Stamped is a recommendation engine. Think Yelp + App Store reviews + Amazon Reviews all rolled into one and streamlined into a customized "stamp". Apps like this one aren't a new idea but Stamped is the first app that executes this idea so perfectly.

Stamped has an economy of sorts. Each new user starts with *only* 100 stamps. As you start recommending things this number begins to fall. There are two ways to earn more stamps though. If you are credited with a friends stamp, you receive one in return. So if I recommend a sushi restaurant and my friend enjoys it too, they may choose to stamp it. This will deposit an extra stamp into my account. The other way is to receive two "likes" for a recommendation. This may be from strangers at a restaurant that enjoyed the tips you had to share. Pretty straight forward.

The service is a joy to use too. The interface is about as responsive and well designed as they come. It doesn't take very long to become accustomed to the app. When recommending something new, Stamped uses Google to pull in any nearby eateries, the App Store for App recommendations and Amazon for book recommendations. When giving something your stamp of approval you can attach a photo and a few words, "look at this taco, it's the best!" kinda thing. All of the stamped recommendations for places appear on a map on the main screen.

The map is different from other social maps though. It defaults to only showing you and your friends. The apps sole purpose is to help friends recommend things to one and other. There is a slider at the bottom of the map that allows you to view all public stamps that are popular around you. This would be the tool you'd use when trying to pick a dish at a good restaurant.

The app's not new, it came out last November, but I do think it has some potential and anyone with a strong opinion (and good taste) should check it out. I need all the recommendations I can get.