Nokia is reaching out to troubled souls with Carpe Diem Daily, a Symbian app available to download for free from the Ovi Store. It's been built in partnership with the happiness gurus at The School of Life -- not affiliated with The School of Hard Knocks.
What does it do?
Carpe Diem Daily gives users a daily task to perform, from the profound to the mundane. The idea is that doing the task will make you think about yourself and your life, and ultimately make you a more reflective, well-rounded person. Recent examples of these daily tasks include eating food you've never tried before, or giving an answer to the question 'what is a sign of true friendship?'.
You fulfil the tasks by either using your phone's camera, or tapping out an answer. Your submission is then pooled with everyone else's answers in the Carpe Diem database.
The app is twinned with a full Carpe Diem Daily Web site, where users can browse submissions and vote for their favourite. The most popular submissions are given pride of place in a sidebar on the full site.
Submitting your responses to tasks is a simple affair. If an image or video is required, then the app will launch your phone's camera. If the task requires a written response, you just tap your answer into a text box and hit 'upload'. We tested Carpe Diem Daily on aand found that, although the interface was sometimes rather slow, the crucial submission process was smooth enough.
Unfortunately, it's not possible to browse other submissions on the app -- you have to use the full site if you want to see what other day seizers are up to. It's a real shame, because browsing other people's submissions really is fun. Using your phone to complete a task feels very natural, but it would have been good if you could check out how other people responded while away from a computer.
App Attack verdict
Carpe Diem Daily's real strength lies in its tasks, which are both interesting and varied. From taking a picture of something you've received as a swap, to constructing your own 'would you rather?' question, the tasks are fun to perform, and it's fascinating browsing through other people's submissions.
The flip side of this is that Carpe Diem Daily's success and viability as a long-term proposition depend heavily both on Nokia devoting time and attention to it, and the user base taking it at least slightly seriously. A warm inner glow aside, there's no real incentive to take part, except the possibility of recognition from the community, so keeping users entertained will require a significant investment of time on Nokia's part.
For now, however, Carpe Diem Daily has an active, engaged user base. It's fun, free and, most importantly, gives you something quick, easy and interesting to do every day. If you have a phone with access to the Ovi Store, it's well worth a look.
Download: Carpe Diem Daily (Ovi Store link)