App Reviews /

Koko Review

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3.33 / 5.00

Overall Score: 6/9

Research Base: 1/3
Research Support: 2/2
Specificity of Proposed Intervention: 2/3
Product Advisory Support: 1/1

Rating Date:  July 2018

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User Experince

User Experience

3.63 / 5.00

Engagement: 3.50 Functionality: 4.50 Aesthetics: 3.50 Information: 3.00 Subjective quality score: 2.00 Perceived impact score: 3.13 Rating date: November 2017 Rated by: Queensland University

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Overall Score: Unacceptable

Does the app have a privacy policy?: Yes

Does the privacy policy describe the information storage and sharing procedures related to user entered information OR state that user information is stored locally?: Yes

Does the privacy policy state that the app/server encrypts OR de-identifies the entered data OR state that user information is stored locally?: No/Can’t Tell

Does the app provide the option of a pin entry or log-in process to view and enter user data?: No/Can’t Tell

Does the privacy policy state whether or not users can delete entered information OR state that user information is stored locally?: No/Can’t Tell

Does the privacy policy state whether or not users can edit entered information OR state that user information is stored locally?: No/Can’t Tell

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Koko is a crowdsourced mental health app ideal for individuals struggling with depressive or mood disorders. The app allows anonymous users to connect with social networks to share concerns ranging from stress management skills to suicidal ideation. The application utilizes artificial intelligence learning to detect high-risk clients and scales up the type of source provided based on the level of distress. Koko starts out with a text-like conversation to better understand the user’s specific needs and goals, establishing that the forum serves as a safe space for individuals. The introductory modules also establish how the user can effectively support others through mock scenarios and replies. Koko allows the user to either get help after describing their most negative thoughts, or help others in need of support. The no-frills user interface allows for quick correspondence for individuals to gain support in a positive and collaborative environment.

Read the Professional Review for Koko: A Professional Review

Technical Details

Available for: Mobile devices, Computers (via Koko’s specialized messenger, Facebook Messenger, Kik, Telegram, or Twitter)
Developer: Koko
Type of Treatment: Cognitive Behavioral Principles, Problem Solving Therapy
Targeted Conditions: Mood disorders, Depressive disorders
Target Audience: Adolescents, Young Adults
Designed to be used in conjunction with a healthcare professional: No
Languages Available: English (Available in non-English languages where supported and available)
Cost: Free
Get it on: Online

Research on this App

Koko itself has not undergone formal research evaluation, however, it is based on a web-based platform, Panoply, which was evaluated in a general population. Initial evaluations of Panoply found benefits in reductions of depressive symptoms as well reductions in perseverative thinking and increases in cognitive appraisal which were the intended targets for the cognitive restructuring activities underlying Panoply (Morris, Schueller, & Picard, 2015).

Morris, R. R., Schueller, S. M., & Picard, R. W. (2015). Efficacy of a web-based, peer-to-peer cognitive reappraisal platform: A randomized controlled trial. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 17, e72.

“The Panoply platform produced significant improvements from pre to post for depression (P=.001), reappraisal (P<.001), and perseverative thinking (P<.001). The expressive writing platform yielded significant pre to post improvements for depression (P=.02) and perseverative thinking (P<.001), but not reappraisal (P=.45).”

How we evaluate

We review apps against rating criteria developed by experts in the field. Some of those criteria are:



We look at the research supporting the technology and the credibility of the development process.



We review privacy policies to see if key pieces of information about what happens with entered data are addressed.


User Experience

We explore how fun, functional, easy-to-use, engaging, and interesting the technology is.


Professional Reviews

A professional in a relevant field downloads and uses the technology and writes a narrative review, highlighting pros & cons and some recommendations for use.

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App is No Longer Available

This application is no longer available to download

One Mind Psyberguide Update
Thank you for your interest in One Mind PsyberGuide. Due to a loss of funding, we are no longer updating or maintaining the One Mind PsyberGuide website. Reviews have been updated as of the last date indicated on each review. Other activities at One Mind PsyberGuide stopped in June 2023. We hope this website can still serve as a resource for those interested in using technology to support people and their mental health. We thank everyone for their support of One Mind PsyberGuide over the years.