Canopy 1.0 for iOS (iPhone screenshot 001)

Not sure about you, but holidays always stress me out. More Black Friday deals than I could possibly process isn’t the worst part, it’s hunting for great gifts that’s both time-consuming and exhausting.

This is especially true when shopping on Amazon. If only someone curated the best and finest products available for purchase on the Internet’s biggest catalog…

That’s where Canopy jumps in. Created by CanopyCo, Inc., this nifty little iPhone application presents you with a beautifully designed list of Amazon products, neatly organized by categories and brands and curated by “a community with great taste.”

In addition to shopping by categories and brands, the free app lets you find gifts by personality type, see what’s new, trending or the most popular in the product feeds, build a personal collection of your favorite Amazon products and much more.

Compared to Amazon’s mobile apps, shopping with Canopy has never been so beautiful. The app is strictly focused on discovery and organization, with categories ranging from camping, home and watches to shoes and apparel for men and women.

There’s even a gift section (how timely!) which surfaces relevant items for men and women, or various personality types like technical, adventurous and athletic.

See something you like?

Tapping the Buy button launches the corresponding Amazon.com product page in Safari so you can complete the purchase. And if you optionally create an account, the app will let you save items, build personal collections or pick up where you left off on the Canopy.co website.

Again, as stated above, Canopy lists products solely found on Amazon in order to provide customers with a reliable and consistent experience.

Canopy 1.0 for iOS (iPhone screenshot 003)

Compared to the vast majority of other shopping sites which tend to be either purely algorithmic or purely manual, Canopy is completely curated by humans.

The team’s philosophy is against duplicating features that Amazon already does well so the app lacks its own star ratings or reviews, for example. Be that as it may, the first release for iOS only scratches the surface of what they’re able to accomplish with Canopy.

According to Canopy co-founder Shannon Fox, they’ll be adding more functionality soon, like the Featured page, comments, following, profile pages and full optimization for the iPad. Support for the United Kingdom and other international Amazon stores is in tow for 2015.

Are there plans to expand to other online stores?

Brian Armstrong, Canopy co-founder and CEO, notes that even though the team “definitely entertains” expanding to other stores and verticals, for the time being “we think there’s so much more potential with our current model that we’re best served by continuing to stay focused.”

Canopy 1.0 for iOS (iPhone screenshot 002)

They’re also looking into adding an option to deep-link into Amazon’s iOS app. “We’re focused on creating value in new ways rather than trying to compete with an already good solution,” he said.

Make no mistake about it, curation matters.

Case in point: I found this great little app on ProductHunt, a human-curated list of new technology products and service by 27-year-old founder and gaming veteran Ryan Hoover. It’s the latest go-to site for many Silicon Valley investors who consult it each morning as part of their daily hunt for the next big thing in the need of funding.

Grab Canopy at no cost in the App Store.

[Canopy Blog]

  • Stephaughn Alston

    This app is beautiful but the design doesn’t allow it to show enough info on the product your looking at it.