The Apps to Make SXSW Work For You

Posted on March 6, 2012 by Comments Off

It’s that time of the year again when SXSW and its groups of film, music and tech junkies descend upon Austin to talk about the latest and greatest bands, films and tech that we can’t live without (or at least think we can’t live without).

But once you show up, how do you take advantage of all of the information that’s available to you? With three festivals, panels, parties, sessions and people to meet, it’s just overwhelming to even think of how to organize all of this information. But never fear we are here to show you the best apps that will make SXSW 2012 the best experience for you.

Getting Around SXSW

The best app by far to get around SXSW is the official SXSW app, SXSW GO. Available on iOS, Android and coming for Windows Phone 7, this is the app that gives you all of the official SXSW information you need. You can build out your schedule, check panel times and sync panels to your device. A solid feature if you’re stuck in a no-signal zone.

Location, Location, Location

What’s a tech festival without talking about location based apps and services. One of the staples in the location based services space, Foursquare is still the king of getting you checked-in to SXSW. But, with its newly launched Explore search engine, you can now use Foursquare to find the best bars, restaurants and more in Austin.

Also another great one is the Hot Spots app Waggener Edstrom debuted last year at SXSW Interactive. It is a mobile app for Windows Phone 7 and iOS that enables users to discover where the most popular hangouts are during SXSW.

Who’s Around You?

Beyond the parties, great food and amazing bands, SXSW is about meeting people that share your same interests and striking up a conversation. At SXSW 2012, you can expect to hear a lot about apps like Highlig.ht, Glancee, Ban.jo and Kismet not only will tell you what your friends are doing, but they will find people that have checked-in or have similar interests that are around you and let you introduce yourself to them. This is a great way to meet new people, network with people that have similar interests and maybe pick up a new friend or two for some late night karaoke!

Capture and Share

Whether you’re checking out one of the hundreds of bands or a great panel, SXSW lends all of its festivities to being captured through photography or video. There are ton of apps out there that do this for you, but below are some of my favorites.

Keeping it Fun at SXSW

Finally, SXSW is all about having fun. Waggener Edstrom partnered with tenfour, a Portland, Ore.-based creative agency, to bring Tweet-A-Beer to life. Tweet-A-Beer is a mobile Web app that helps people network and socialize by purchasing each other a beer over Twitter, perfect for fostering the face-to-face connections that are a natural part of the SXSW Interactive Festival or for those following through the Twittersphere.

So as you get prepped up for SXSW, make sure you take a look at the list of apps above. Not only will they help you keep organized at the show, but you might just find some new friends join you in the awesome experience of SXSW.

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