Quit Guide app

Quit Guide app

  • An app from the National Cancer Institute aimed at anyone wanting to quit smoking.
yellow unaunahi tile
Print this page

Quit Guide app By National Cancer Institute


  • Self-help.
  • Reminders.
  • Tracking your habits.
  • Mood Tracking.
Clinical review 

4 star review

Read a clinical review below.

Security and privacy Does the app:
  • Collect medical information? Yes – smoking status
  • Require a login? No
  • Have password protection? No
  • Have a privacy policy? Yes
  • Require internet access to use? Yes

Read more about safety and security when using apps.

Tips to improve your privacy and security [PNG, 200 KB] Health Navigator Charitable Trust, NZ
Staying safe online(external link) Netsafe, NZ

Cost Free
How to get the app

This app aims to support people who are trying to quit smoking. Users are prompted to set a quit date and record a personal message, together with a picture, about their reason for quitting. This message is a source of motivation and going forward, every time the user opens the app, the message and picture appear as a reminder. There are options to share on Facebook, track smoking habits such as when cravings occur, or specific moods that prompt smoking and set motivational messages about smoking cessation at the places and times the user is most likely to smoke.

For a more detailed description of the app, see Google Play(external link) or iTunes(external link) and for a detailed review, see reviews below.


Has provision for user to create a simple quit plan.

 Users can add locations or times of the day when you are most likely to crave a cigarette, and then the app sends you a message at this time or at the place (it may be a local bar or friend's house) and it just gives you a wee personal reminder about why you are quitting. 

 Recognises that smoking cessation medication is an important part of the quitting programme and provides links to smoking cessation medication pages (in the How to Quit section).

 Advice provided in the Track my Craving section, is tailored to the strength of craving and trigger – this gives the app a more personalised and relevant feel. There is an option to add journal entries which can be a useful self-reflection tool. Similarly, the Tips and Distractions in the Manage my Mood section is tailored to the user's selection, making them pertinent and appropriate. 

 Made by a reputable organisation, free and with no ads.

Some links don't work. 

 The How to Quit section has useful information on the quitting process such as steps to prepare, cravings, withdrawal, slips and staying smoke free. However, this information is in lengthy paragraphs of text that are cumbersome for the user to read, especially on a phone. It would be more useful if this important information was summarised and presented in an app-friendly, succinct format.

 Graphics and colour display in some sections of My History are very dull and difficult to read.

 The cost of cigarettes is in US dollars and outsourced information is to American websites. 

 Referral to call an American Quitline is given (not targeted to a New Zealand audience).

Clinical review

4 star review

: Lena Estrin, Community Pharmacist
Date of review: November 2022
Platform: Android
Version: 2.1.26

Comments: This is a useful free app which helps people understand their smoking habits and support them to quit smoking. By tracking cravings and moods people can get a sense of what their triggers are, and then put in place actions to prevent smoking in these circumstances. For example, if there is a time or place that you often crave cigarettes, you can set a reminder message to come up at this time. Or, if it’s when you feel a certain way (eg, lonely or stressed), it will come up with a suggestion to help manage this without smoking. All your efforts to quit smoking are reinforced with the app showing you the number of days you have been smokefree, and the time and money this will have saved you. It has been made by a reputable organisation and has no pesky ad popups. Drawbacks are that it is not New Zealand based and so referrals are to American based quit lines.
Safety concerns: None.
New Zealand relevanceMost of the content of the app is relevant to New Zealanders. Tracking and message prompts and advice on how to quit (including medicines you can use to support quitting) are all similar to what we recommend in New Zealand. The money saved is in US dollars and so underestimates the true savings made from quitting smoking. Being a US based app, it does not link to New Zealand quit smoking services or references.

Clinical review

5 star review

: Brendon McIntosh, Community Pharmacist, Māori Pharmacist Association
Date of review: November 2017
Comments: This app is most helpful for people who like to track how they are going daily and record their feelings as a part of the smoking cessation journey. It's useful for anyone who has tried to quit but wants an extra hand this time or something to help them be accountable. It's a very encouraging app that has new alerts pop up each day and allows the person to keep track of how many days they have been smokefree. This app makes quitting fun and more like a game. But also has serious reminders about why you are quitting and the benefits that will come. If only it had NZ links then it would be perfect.  
Safety concerns: None.
New Zealand relevance: The general advice and the medicines talked about are the same as in New Zealand. The only difference is that it links to the American Quitsmoking website and for the money saved part it is in US dollars which only goes up to $10 for a packet of cigarettes. This doesn’t reflect New Zealand prices therefore the money saved part of the app is highly underestimated.

This app has been reviewed by other independent websites:

QuitGuide is a great, free smoking cessation app from the National Cancer Institute(external link) iMedicalApps, August 2016


The following references relate to articles about apps for smoking cessation:

  1. Whittaker RI, McRobbie H, Bullen C, Rodgers A, Gu Y. Mobile phone-based interventions for smoking cessation(external link) Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2016 Apr 10;4:CD006611 
  2. Hoeppner BB, Hoeppner SS, Seaboyer L, et al. How Smart are Smartphone Apps for Smoking Cessation? A Content Analysis(external link) Nicotine Tob Res. 2016. May;18(5):1025-31
  3. Heminger CL, Schindler-Ruwisch JM, Abroms LC. Smoking cessation support for pregnant women: role of mobile technology(external link) Subst Abuse Rehabil. 2016 Apr 12;7:15-26
  4. Baskerville NB, Dash D, Wong K, et al. Perceptions Toward a Smoking Cessation App Targeting LGBTQ+ Youth and Young Adults: A Qualitative Framework Analysis of Focus Groups(external link)  JMIR Public Health Surveill. 2016;2(2):e165
  5. Ubhi HK, Michie S, Kotz D, et al. Characterising smoking cessation smartphone applications in terms of behaviour change techniques, engagement and ease-of-use features(external link).Transl Behav Med. 2016;6(3):410-7
  6. Abroms LC, Lee Westmaas J, Bontemps-Jones J, et al. A content analysis of popular smartphone apps for smoking cessation(external link) Am J Prev Med. 2013 Dec;45(6):732-6
  7. Finkelstein J, Cha EM. Using a Mobile App to Promote Smoking Cessation in Hospitalized Patients(external link) JMIR Mhealth Uhealth 2016;4(2):e59
  8. A handbook on how to implement mTobaccoCessation(external link) WHO publication, 2015

Disclaimer: The NZ Health App Library is a free consumer service to help you decide whether a health app would be suitable for you. Our review process is independent. We have no relationship with the app developers or companies and no responsibility for the service they provide. This means that if you have an issue with one of the apps we have reviewed, you will need to contact the app developer or company directly.

Credits: Healthify editorial team. Healthify is brought to you by Health Navigator Charitable Trust.