If you’ve been on any kind of social media this week, you’re probably already aware that VidCon kicks off today. Since its inaugural year in 2010, the annual gathering has grown from a small get-together of some 1,400 people to a massive convention center-filling YouTube extravaganza. Attendance this year is expected to exceed the 12,000 fans, creators and industry professionals who showed up last year. As you can imagine, the whole thing is a little overwhelming, so this year VidCon is offering a dedicated app to make life a little easier. Here are the seven most useful things about the VidCon App.
VidCon is a busy place, and with mobs of fans and dozens of panels taking place every hour it can be difficult to keep track of where you’re supposed to be. Scroll through a list of your favorite YouTubers to find out what panels they’re on or what signings they’ll be at and add them to a personalized schedule so you won’t miss a thing. Or, if you’re not sure where you want to be, you can check out “What’s Hot” to see which functions are getting the most attention from other attendees.
By now you may have noticed that the Anaheim Convention center is NOT small. The app’s Map feature will keep you on course and even highlight points of interest nearby. You can even filter the points of interest to single out what you need. Mine will be permanently set to “Food and Drink”
This might be my favorite feature, if only because it saves time. The app automatically pulls together a feed of all the latest Twitter and Instagram posts under #VidCon. Save yourself the hassle of clicking between Twitter and Instagram, and keep track of all the action in one spot.
It wouldn’t be VidCon without selfies. The app has a built-in camera along with customized filters and VidCon borders. The only thing more important the capturing your favorite YouTuber on camera is making sure that your joint selfie has a rad VidCon logo to make it look legit.
If you’re not using the map feature, but you still want to know what’s up, you can check the Attractions tab. Check here for minute-to-minute updates on what’s going on at the convention. You can also search events by sponsor, exhibitor, type of service, or my recurring personal favorite, “Food and Drink.” This part of the app is a little thin right now since today is industry day, but expect it to fill up with more information once the community portion of the conference gets underway.
6. Quick Pass
The VidCon app also lets you save time by uploading your pass information onto the app for convenience. Then you can leave your pass at home and just rely on your smart phone.
Once you’ve uploaded your VidCon pass you can also share that information with others using the VidContacts feature to create a virtual contact card that you can use to quickly swap information and network with other attendees.
Overall it’s great that VidCon has a dedicated app to help attendees navigate the sprawling convention and make the most of their time. Some of the features look helpful but have yet to be populated with much information, however that is likely to change as the conference gets fully underway. I also experienced some problems early on. The app crashed frequently, although that probably says more about my aging iPhone 4s than the quality of the app. Once I managed to get the app working I found it to be smooth, simple, and easy to navigate. It’s also free on the app store so it’s well worth a try for VidCon vets and newbies alike.