Wikipedia has grown into one of the largest reference sources on the planet. WikiPanda, on the other hand, is a Windows Phone 7 application that will make tapping into Wikipedia from your Windows Phone easy.
Developed by PandaBits, WikiPanda offers you a hub interface with Wikipedia that will let you search by topic, view featured articles and historical facts for that particular date. WikiPanda presents the information nicely with a clean looking, easily navigated layout.
To read a bit more on this reference application for your Windows Phone, slide on past the break.
WikiPanda lays things out nicely. When you first launch the application you'll find yourself facing WikiPanda's main hub which consists of:
- Main Search Page: Here's where you search by keyword. A list of your more recent searches are also displayed on this page for easy reference.
- Featured Article: Here's where you'll find a featured topic of the day. Any topic is fair game and you never know what may pop up.
- On This Day: Here's where you'll find moments in history for the day. Key components of this fact are highlighted for easy reference and search.
- About: This page plugs the developer and has two settings features. You can clear your recent search history and clear your local browser cache from this page.
The main hub is simple, straight forward and concentrates on the task at hand. I like the Featured Article and On This Day pages. If you try to learn something new every day, these two pages helps tremendously with such a task.
The main function of WikiPanda is to search Wikipedia. Keyword searches come back quick by way of an internal browser. From your primary search result, you can search within that result or access a contents hub that displays the sections, categories, and languages within the result.
Just as you would find in searching directly from Wikipedia, WikiPanda offers vast, multi-layered results. For example in searching "coat" all that is returned is the definition and variations of the use of the word "coat" (e.g. coat of arms, animal coat, etc.) Each word variation within that word is then searchable by tapping on it.
There may not be much to WikiPanda but it does what it does very well. Searches were fast, I like the clean looking hub, and the tid-bits of random information (the feature article and "on this day" feature) on the main hub gives the application a little character.
Oh, and another bonus about WikiPanda is that it is a free application over at the Marketplace.
The Windows Phone 7 application ran smoothly with no bugs, glitches or crashes experienced. I would have no problem recommending WikiPanda for someone needing a reference application for their Windows Phone.
You can find your copy of WikiPanda here (opens your Zune Desktop) at the Marketplace.