Watchup is a great video news app for the iPad and a recent pick for our Best Free iPad App of the Week. The app received another substantial update yesterday, to Version 1.11.0.
One of the most notable items in this update is the addition of ESPN to the channel list. For sports fans this is very good news – as most of the app’s channels have been more general news up to now. It’s good to see the leading sports network added. Other new channels added in this update include the New York Daily News, This Week in Startups, and local channels from Boston and Portland.
There are also some nice UI changes in this update:
• Subscribe to up to 20 channels.
• Just turn the app on and your automatic newscast will play continuously.
• Swipe to the next video, just like a magazine.
• While watching, you can now see and manipulate all your queue: queue up or play any video straight away
• Want to browse videos per channel? Just pull down the top panel and pick your favorite clips to add them to the queue.
• Pull up the lower panel to reveal extensive descriptions about each video.
• Multitask: subscribe or unsubscribe to/from a channel by pulling the left handle while watching.
Watchup continues to be one of my favorite news apps on the iPad, and the developers have done a great job with frequent updates over recent months.
Here’s an App Store link for Watchup for iPad; it’s still a free app.
Hourly News is a simple little single-purpose app for the iPad and iPhone. It’s a podcast app that brings hourly news updates from a small but blue-chip list of sources and presents them in bare-bones basic interface that’s a pleasure to use.
I only just discovered the app a couple days back thanks to a post by MG Siegler, but it has become an instant favorite on my iPad mini.
The sources included in the app are NPR , BBC, CBC, ABC, CBS, WSJ, ESPN, VOA, SRN, FOX news, and Bloomberg Radio – so you get good coverage of pretty much all major news topics.
NewsFlash is a relatively new breaking news and headlines RSS reader app for the iPad and iPhone. It uses quite a simple interface and offers breaking news and top stories from around the world and in a number of languages.
I have a clear favorite RSS reader app for the iPad, River of News, and use Twitter and notifications from a handful of news apps to attempt to keep up with breaking news – but I’m always on the lookout for more good news and RSS sources, so I’ve been giving NewsFlash a try over the last several days. The short story here is that I’ve been pleasantly surprised by how much I like this app. Hit the break for the reasons why …
River of News for Google Reader, as the name might give away, is an RSS reader for the iPad for those who use Google Reader to keep up with their favorite feeds.
I’m a big consumer of RSS feeds as a major part of how I keep up with news each day – whether it’s iPad and iOS news, general tech news, or just news in general. I also follow Twitter, Google+, and news magazines like Flipboard, Zite, Google Currents, and others to keep up with what’s happening – but tracking my 200 or so favorite feeds in Google Reader is still my most used and most effective way to try to keep up with the daily information overload we’re all faced with these days.
I’ve tried other RSS apps on the desktop but Google Reader in a browser has remained my favorite for years on the desktop. It was my favorite on the iPhone for a long while too – even after the App Store opened and many decent native RSS reader apps came along. These days I do most of my reading on the iPad, so finding a great RSS app for the iPad was a priority from Day 1. Happily, River of News hit the iPad App Store a few months after the iPad was released – and it has been my favorite RSS app ever since.
Google Currents is Google’s new Flipboard-style news magazine for the iPad, iPhone and Android devices. I say Flipboard style because that seems to be the comparison lots of people are making in initial responses to its release. Here’s a slice of how Google themselves describe the new app on the Google Mobile Blog:
We strive to give you beautiful and simple ways to experience all the content the web has to offer, such as sharing photos on Google+, watching YouTube videos and discovering books, movies and music from Android Market. Today we’re expanding our content offering with the introduction of Google Currents, a new application for Android devices, iPads and iPhones that lets you explore online magazines and other content with the swipe of a finger.
They’ve partnered with over 150 publishers to offer full-length articles – publishers that include CNET, AllThingsD, Forbes, PBS and more big names. There’s also some sort of self-service platform for publishers.
I’m a huge fan of Flipboard and of iPad magazines in general, so of course I installed Google Currents as soon as I saw it mentioned earlier today. I’ve only spent a very short while with it so far, but I’ve got some quick notes and thoughts on it – hit the break for those and a couple more screenshots …
Flipboard – the brilliant and popular social news magazine iPad app – has had a major update today. The new version is 1.5, and one of the biggest additions in it is a new Content Guide.
The Content Guide is described as an easy way to flip to anything that interests you at anytime. It’s implemented as a red ribbon at the top right of Flipboard screens; you tap on it to search for people, topics, or blogs you’re interested in. Or just browse through the built-in Flipboard sections and suggested content. You can also now add any section you enjoy as a favorite with a single tap.
Another notable new feature in this 1.5 update is Linked In integration – offering access to more than 30 industry feeds and more from the leading business-focused social network.
Here’s the full change list for this latest Flipboard update:
★ Content Guide. Tap on the red ribbon to instantly access all your social networks, favorite sections, and a wide range of beautiful featured content. You can also search for any people, publications, websites or topics, such as National Geographic, Design or Ashton Kutcher.
★ Favorites. Save any section as a Favorite on Flipboard, even after you’ve filled up your first two pages. You can access the entire list in your Content Guide.
★ LinkedIn. The largest network of your trusted professional contacts is now on Flipboard. Add LinkedIn to create an industry magazine for reading what your contacts have shared, as well as news from over 40 industries with LinkedIn Today.
★ Popular. Popular stories are highlighted, making it easy to discover great articles being read on Flipboard.
★ Speed. Flipping is faster and diving into stories is more streamlined. A single tap gets you to the article, social interactions are now at the bottom of the page, and now you can flip from one story to the next to keep reading between articles, photos, and updates from friends.
I’ve only just applied the update a short while ago, but the new Content Guide stuff looks very nice. Flipboard in an outstanding app, one of the most innovative and iPad-like apps released on the iPad App Store. This update just helps cement its deserved reputation as the best iPad news / magazine title we’ve seen yet.
Here’s an App Store link for Flipboard; it’s a free app.
Fox News has launched an iPad app today, called simply Fox News for iPad. It’s a free app for now, sponsored by ExxonMobil, whose ads are shown prominently on all pages and as intros on many of the videos in the app.
The app offers a lot of what you’d expect from Fox News and lots of coverage of breaking news. I’ve only taken a very quick look at it so far and Fox News is not my most watched news channel, but this app looks pretty sharp at first glance.
Skygrid – one of the leading news apps for iPad and iOS – has been updated this week, to Version 2.0.
The big addition in this new version is more and better ways to follow specific topics that interest you. You can now follow just about anything you can think of within the app – any topic you like, social networks, individual sites (like, say, this one right here), and you can see everything you follow on one tab in the app. Very nice.
There’s already a handy ‘Latest on iPad’ topic to follow, which I’m hoping this site will be added to soon.
Skygrid was already a very good news app that seems to have all the right algorithms and technology to bring breaking and top stories in as quickly as any app I’ve seen. This update makes it even more personal and customizable.
The screencap above is what a page looks like in Feedly on the iPad if you choose to turn your iPad into landscape mode. Feedly doesn’t recognize landscape mode at all, so you’re forced to use the app always in portrait mode. I think that’s a very bad design decision for any app that involves reading on the iPad. The way we choose to read on the iPad is both a very personal thing, and something that may well change depending on where you are, what time of day it is, and so on.
This is just one of a number of very disappointing aspects of Feedly on the iPad. Another major one is that the app makes it very difficult to see all of your feeds, if you have more than ten. I have over 200 subscriptions, so seeing only 10 in the home page’s Featured area is really not much use at all. And there is no ability to choose which feeds show up in the featured section. So we’re forced into portrait mode and forced to go with whatever the app thinks is the right list of featured feeds. Very lame.
Flipboard – the excellent, award-winning iPad social news magazine – has been updated this week, to Version 1.2.1.
This update adds special Flipboard pages from Oprah, Rolling Stone magazine, Wired, Elle, and more – nicely expanding its range of custom content pages.
Flipboard is conisdered by many to be perhaps the best iPad app yet. It’s certainly one of the flagship titles on the iPad App Store. As always, it’s good to see great apps not resting on their laurels and continuing to add new features and more good content.
You can find this latest version of Flipboard in the App Store now; it’s still a free app.
The Onion Tablet brings The Onion, or ‘America’s Finest News Source’, to the iPad. It was released on the iPad App Store on April 1st, a fitting date for the most scathingly satirical news title to hit the iPad. Here’s a little of its App Store intro:
This is the official iPad application of The Onion, America’s Finest News Source. It is the last bastion of unbiased, reliable, and definitive news in a world dominated by superficiality, mediocrity, and non-Onion news outlets.
I’ve been trying out The Onion Tablet over the weekend, closely comparing its news coverage with that of the CNN, New York Times, Times of London, and Washington Post apps. That last part is completely untrue of course, but I have been giving the new Onion app a look …