Do you still read newspapers? I certainly don’t. Well at least not the actual printed editions. It’s been several years since my local newspaper started publishing an online edition. I simply read it at their web site. Last year I sold an auto. At the website I was able to place an ad, upload a photo and bill the charges to my credit card. Mobile devices make reading the paper even easier and better. Today I will discuss three FREE apps that you might like to try on your iPod Touch or iPad.
The Fluent News Reader is available for both the Touch and the iPad. Of the three, it is probably the most newspaper-like. The app opens to a list of top news around the world with snippets of information on each. Tapping on a headline brings you to the complete article including its source and photos if available. Alternately, you can browse the paper in sections including Weather, Sports and etc. Articles can be saved for offline reading. This is a good news app if you don’t own an iPad.
If you do have an iPad you will want to take a look at Skygrid. It’s features are similar to Fluent’s however navigation between articles is different. In landscape position either Feature articles or Categories are listed in a column on the left. When an article is selected, it is displayed in a square window on the right. When the iPad is rotated to portrait mode, the articles list disappears and the square window expands to full screen. In my opinion, this speeds up navigation a bit.
The Guardian Eyewitness is officially classified as a photography app and not a news app. Actually it’s a hybrid. The app displays photos of current events around the world taken by local news sources. A brief description of each event accompanies the photo. A photography tip relevant to the photo is also displayed. Photos can be browsed in several ways and saved to your Photos directory if you especially like one. By default they are displayed as a slide show going backwards in time with a limit of 100 photos.
All of these apps integrate with Facebook and Twitter. You can share your articles and photos with friends. Eventually, as my iPad gets crowded, one of the news apps will be deleted. Fluent will stay on the Touch but might be deleted on the iPad as I really do like how Skygrid navigates. Of course the deciding factor may not depend on appearance or navigation but on the news content actually delivered. Only time and use will tell. The only certainty is that it is not likely that I will ever again buy a printed newspaper!