If you're in the military, you're no stranger to the process of transferring to new and potentially exciting duty stations.
However, transferring between CONUS duty and OCONUS duty can be especially stressful if you've never done it before, and it's worsened by the fact that your assigned sponsor may be otherwise occupied—or worse: ill-suited for the task.
Enter Annai: An app that was created by a Sailor, for Sailors.
May 16, 2012 was a day that will forever live in infamy for me, because my sponsor ended up being wholly unreliable and set the tone for my stay in Japan. Though it's a beautiful country with beautiful people and beautiful sights to see, my first experiences were already negative ones as I struggled to find the resources I needed to get my bearings. I had no place to stay, didn't understand the exchange rates for currency, and was just overall abandoned by the one person that should have had my back.
Annai addresses all the things that I wish that I had had back then, with features such as:
- Real-time currency exchange rates between Japanese Yen and the United States Dollar.
- Updated news feed with news you can use, when you can use it!
- A phone book with important contacts on Commander, Fleet Activities Yokosuka.
- A phrase book that you can add your own custom phrases to to get acquainted with the local tongue.
- A bus schedule covering the Clockwise (CW) and Counter-Clockwise (CCW) buses on the base that uses location services to better help you find the bus you need.
- A transition checklist to help you before and after your transition to Japan.
- NEW! Need help getting your car registered and all that other LTO jazz? Version 1.1 brings an LTO runner directory!
Annai is a living app, and will only continue to improve with the feedback of its users.
If you're an active duty service member and making the jump, check out Annai to help ensure your stay is a pleasant one!
And of course, I'd be remiss not to answer the single most commonly asked question: "What is Annai?"
Annai is Japanese for "guidance" or "information", and that is the sole purpose for which it exists.
This app is not in any way, shape, or form endorsed by the United States Navy.
There was a snafu with that last update that fixed some issues, but added some new ones, they've been fixed in this update. Specifically:
• The phone book, phrase book, and transition checklists went "psssssht!" and up, instead of "whoosh!" and to the right. I've fixed that. If you can't hear the sounds, you're not imagining them hard enough.
• The support functionality was distracted. I removed any and all squirrels and shinies from view, and it'll now help you submit support tickets.
• There may or may not have been a gremlin within the code causing all these issues. I cannot confirm nor deny this, nor can I confirm nor deny that, through an hour or two of tireless nerdy chanting, said gremlin has been expunged.
...Nope, cannot confirm nor deny.
Remember: If you run into any issues or would like to see new features, please submit a ticket or leave a review in the App Store to help guide Annai's development!
Ratings and Reviews
Very useful even after you get acclimated to the command with the bus schedule and phone listing.
I appreciate the list of updates/ happenings and the bus schedule on base is so helpful!
Wish I'd had it when I went to Japan.
But then, I may be a little biased.
…And it just keeps getting better!
With Family Sharing set up, up to six family members can use this app.