Monday, 3 May 2010

The Times Spelling Bee

Price at time of writing £1.19 How good do you think your spelling is? (approx $2)

Well this app by The Times can test your spelling at three difficulty levels easy, medium and hard.

The app has been open to some criticism because certain words (e.g. there and their, hear and here) sound the same and because certain words are difficult to hear and identify because of bad pronunciation and the accent of the speaker.

The first point, similar sounding words, has been dealt with as effectively as possible. This is done by a series of clues you can run through to establish which word you are looking for. This works quite well in practice.

The second point the developer has tried to deal with by saying they have resorted to the narrators with the clearest voices. It is better, but it is by no means perfect and it can still be difficult, even with the ability to play the spoken word over and over, to work out what is being said.

I have to be fair here and to point out the clarity is better if you use earphones, but that isn't always practical.

If I look at my stats on this app it's amazing to see how many times I have eventually lost only because I couldn't identify the spoken word, not because I couldn't spell it, even on easy! "Nether" is one example - I heard "never".

As regards to the stats this relates to your performance only. No multiplayer and no online integration has resulted in this being a good, but not outstanding app. The price point quoted above could also be seen as expensive compared to other word games.

For those who wish to improve their spelling this is still a fully recommended application. With the thousands of words in it's database you will always be fully tested. Believe me hard mode will test with a vengeance those who think they can spell really difficult words..... I'd never even heard of proselytise let alone know how to spell it!

The Times Spelling Bee is still an app "with potential" to be a top rated app. At the current time though whilst it does stand out as being the best spelling app available it could certainly be a darned site better with more functionality.

8/10 Available here The Times Spelling Bee

the Times Spelling Bee app screenshots

1 comment:

  1. Hi, there is a great new spelling game called ColdSpell. It's combines a classic tile spelling game with arcade power-ups (