Craigslist Is Finally Getting Its First App

It's only about a decade behind all its closest competitors

craigslist app
Welcome to the App Store, Craigslist.
Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

With its stark, unpretentious design, Craigslist has long evoked an earlier, simpler, perhaps sketchier era of the internet. But now, the site that has maintained a precarious balance between the right and wrong sides of the internet for nearly 25 years is finally stepping into the modern world with its first app.

I use the word modern loosely, as Craigslist is over a decade late to the App Store and unless you happen to be a devoted mobile Craigslist user you may have reasonably assumed the site would’ve already launched an app years ago.

But while Craigslist is finally getting into the world of apps, the long-running internet relic hasn’t forgotten its roots. As the Verge noted, the new iOS app dutifully maintains the site’s no-frills approach to web design, closely replicating Craigslist’s clean and basic design principles.

In terms of functionality, the app, available on iOS and in beta on Android, also mirrors its web-based origins. Users can browse listings in various categories, search, place ads, create alerts for listings and contact sellers, all without ever needing to register or set up an account.

According to App Store reviews, some users seem generally content with the new platform, praising the app’s “smooth, not clunky” interface and straightforwardness as a testament to the “simplistic style that many of us have been waiting on and expected from Craigslist.”

Others, however, are not as wooed by Craigslist’s commitment to archaic simplicity. One user called the app “too little too late,” and criticized the app’s failure to address any of the ongoing safety concerns and identity verification issues that have long been a less than flattering hallmark of the Craigslist experience. The user went on to call the company’s late entry into the app world “desperate,” adding, “Hope Craig enjoyed his run because it is just about over and this app won’t do much to change that.”

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