You won’t believe me, but I swear that I bought Pulse, an app that displays RSS feeds in a horizontal/vertical graphic navigation, completely by accident.
No, it’s never happened before. I was innocently browsing around the iPad RSS reader apps in the store when, before I knew it, my finger had already clicked and clicked and I saw the familiar “purchasing…” message in iTunes. Hmm. Now that I had it, I might as well check it out. I then proceeded to purchase NewsRack, because of good reviews I’d read about it. Now was my chance to see how which app would feed my feed addiction (get it?) in a better way. The result is quite surprising.
My expectations were low at the outset, since I have spent over a year looking for a good RSS reader on the iPhone, in vain. Little did I realise how hard developers were working to exploit possibilities of the medium iPad.
Let’s look at NewsRack. In a word, it’s great. It syncs with Google reader. It’s visually appealing – a neat left feeds column is flanked by a larger content window, which lets you view in Safari, or share to various sources. It’s as good as browsing feeds on a laptop, superior to the same activity on an iPhone, where I’ve always felt that the small screen size was less than inviting.
And then there is Pulse, which takes feeds to another level, more 3-dimensional and fun to navigate. Swish sideways or from top to bottom to browse to your heart’s content. This is more stylish, more recreational. Clicking on an item opens a side window for in-app or browser reading or sharing. For me, perfect for short feeds reading on the go.
For now, I can imagine using both apps. I’ve loaded only my top 15 sites to Pulse, so I can check headlines and stories quickly on the go. Then when I’m home I can read through all sites news in detail using NewsRack.
I don’t think the developers envisioned their apps being used in tandem, but for the moment and for me, they complement each other perfectly.