iPhone App Review: Chumkee

iPhone App Review: Chumkee

July 15th, 2012 by

A word of warning: this review may contain an inordinate number of uses of the word “banana”.

Are you tired of plain old boring social networks? Do you need an outlet for your crazier side, or are looking for people to make you laugh? Maybe you’re just sick of retweets, upvotes, and likes, and want to award people something more frivolous for their hard social-networking work, like a banana? Then Chumkee is the social network that you never knew you were always looking for.

Chumkee is the conversation-creating social network that offers interesting questions and crazy challenges for you to record and upload. You can track your upward social mobility through the banana-meter, and award bananas yourself for people that make you laugh, smile, or just seem like they deserve some virtual fruit. Chumkee is new, different, and definitely entertaining.

How It Works

You can download the free app and browse all you want without even creating an account. There are a number of questions and challenges, that people all over the world record themselves doing and then upload the results. Think questions like “What’s your favorite movie quote?”, or “What’s your most useless superpower? “, and activities like “Make your bed like a ninja.” We’re not talking about crowd-sourcing the answer to world famine or anything, this is purely fun stuff to get you active and meeting new people.

You can create an account from right within the app, connect to Facebook and Twitter of course, and then start answering your own questions and tossing out bananas to your heart’s content. The bananas function sort of like Facebook’s “Like”, and by “sort of” I mean “exactly”, except in Chumkee your banana-boat stockpile is tracked and compared to others around the world. And I don’t think the term banana boat is actually used in the app, but it probably should be.

When recording video answers or taking still pictures you don’t even have to leave the app. Chumkee can also translate others’ written language so you can at least read what you new international friends are saying, and the app does feature the requisite private messaging and user blocking functions.

Pros And Cons

Chumkee is quite honestly a fun and silly app. Facebook is nice until your ultra-conservative (or ultra-liberal) Aunt Kate starts ranting on your wall about where the country is headed, sparking a 42-comment argument that carries over to the dinner table next Thanksgiving. Chumkee is purely about being silly, having fun, and watching other people be silly and have fun.

There’s nothing particularly negative I could say about it except that it seems to be stocked primarily with young people, and I’m kind of getting to be an old fart so it’s not exactly my cup of tea anymore. I only mention it because that is probably a positive point for Chumkee’s target audience: it’s seemingly got old-fart repellent.


Chumkee is a weird, fun, fun-loving app for people that want to let the air out of their usual social network and just have some fun. Even more fun is that it’s free, Universal, and easy-to-use. Let the bananas fly!

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