Wednesday, March 13, 2013

MangoPlate - New Restaurant App in English



For the past 7 months, I've been trying out this thing called working.  By trying out, I mean that there's been zero room for anything else in my life, and this includes this blog and my poor cat who now hates me and tried to piss on me the other night.

My terribly mannered cat trying to filch a cube of chicken.
So my current job stems from annoying experiences as an expat, namely eating.  Is anyone surprised?  I mean...I do like to eat.  What I always found frustrating is the path of discovery for restaurants.  Most good meals I've had in Korea found their way to my face through haphazard happenstance.  There's never been one single way, or even a few solid ways, of discovering a good restaurant.  A Facebook post here.  A magazine article there.  A random conversation.  With no organized method of how I came across these tasty tidbits of info, I felt something like an ant feeling around without antennas.

I used to succumb to the monotony of 참치김밥 (tuna kimbap) or whatever for long stretches where trying new places seemed like a lot of work.  It's strange how a sudden fear of commitment would wash over me as I kind of tried to check out the exterior of a place I was kind of interested in trying out.  But with ajummas waving at me and trying to get me to come in, I would usually smile weakly and keep walking.  What if it sucks?  What if it's expensive?  How do I minimize restaurant letdown when operating off this completely inefficient system of hit or miss?

So, MangoPlate was born.  It's a mobile app, and it aims to help you discover more places to eat and better places to eat.  Discovery is streamlined into one place - the restaurant feed.  Because MangoPlate is tied into Facebook, users can see where their friends are eating and what they think of the place.  They can upload pictures, and review restaurants.

But MangoPlate isn't solely about discovery of cool, new places to eat.  We've invested months in building an extensive database in both Korean and English with individually verified locations, contact information, and restaurant details.


Even if you don't have a smartphone, you can follow us on Facebook to get inside tips on some really amazing places to eat in Seoul.   We're still in our open beta phase, but it's possible to download the app and test it out.  We always welcome feedback; it makes us better so you can find food better.  Wanna be able to look that ajumma straight in the eye knowing her fried squid is gonna kill it?  Download our app and start eating better.  Let me know what you think!

joyce.kong@mangoplate.com

PS - Right now, we are only available for download for Android phones through the Google Play store.  We are currently developing the iOS version, and it should be ready soon...I'll let you know :)

5 comments:

  1. It sounds like a great app but some of the permissions are of some concern. Accessing the camera without my knowledge? reading my contacts? making calls without my permission or knowledge? There are some serious privacy concerns that need to be addressed before I'd even think of installing this app.

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    Replies
    1. Hi De Villiers,

      Your concerns are completely valid, and I want to reassure you of our privacy policies. We do not access your camera or photo album, read contacts, or make calls without explicit permission. Basically, we won't post to Facebook or go through your phone without permission, and privacy is something we take seriously. Thanks for your feedback, and hit me up if you have any further comments!

      Joyce

      Delete
  2. Just downloaded Mangoplate. Good UI, solid restaurant selection. I'll definitely be using this app in the future. Thanks for the hot tip, Joyce.

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