We are iPhone junkies and love the theme park apps for helping us plan our days at the parks. It is one of those tools that helps us to decide which park to go to. So when Universal announced their new mobile app we jumped on it and downloaded it. Anything to help us plan our in park days.
This new Universal Studios mobile app for iOS is beautiful to view. When initially opening the app, the big Universal Orlando resorts logo stands out on the iPhone screen with a sky blue background.
The app then opens to the home page, highlighting a few of Universal’s key attractions as well as direct links to a list of rides, shows, and dining options. Also included on the home screen is a link to an interactive map of both of Universal Orlando’s parks: Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios, as well as Universal Orlando’s City Walk.
A clickable button in the top left corner of the home screen opens a list of all possible points of information.
Clicking on one of these options opens a map of the park/resort highlighting all possible choices. The example I used was Rides. After clicking on Rides, an interactive map opened showing all possible rides available at each of the Universal Studios parks: Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios. This Rides section allows the user to select rides by category, such as thrill rides, water rides, kids rides, or rides featuring 3D or 4D technology. The example below highlights only thrill rides at both of the parks.
I decided to choose one of my favorite thrill rides at Universal Orlando’s Islands of Adventure: The Incredible Hulk Coaster. Simply touching the rides over where the Hulk Coaster is located on the map opens up more information on the ride itself, such as a description of the ride, height requirements, child swap availability, etc. If I was using this app at the park, the standby line wait time would also be listed on this screen as well.
Overall, I’ve found the Universal Studios iOS mobile app easy to navigate and use. The app is very map driven and defaults to making selections off of the map to find the points of interest a user would like to find. The app so far has proven to work fast and for a first release hasn’t crashed, which is something I find very nice to see from a first version.
A reason we won’t be using this app as much as we’d like to at this time is the lack of availability to see wait times outside of the Universal Studios parks. The first release of this app only shows wait times for rides if the GPS feature of this app is enabled on your iOS device and, subsequently, only shows wait times if a user is actually at the Universal Orlando parks. As a local annual passholder, we use these wait times to see how crowded the parks may be at a given point in the day and make a determination if it’s worth going at all. Seeing wait times no matter where we’re located is a big feature for us and until this feature is updated, we won’t be using this app as much as we would like.