The Complete Guide to the iPad News Reading Experience: The Battle of the Apps


Flipboard is perhaps the most well-known of the magazine-style news reading apps. It aggregates content primarily from the user’s connected social networks including Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and LinkedIn. It also displays content from a plethora of official content providers, consisting of a variety of blogs and news sources. There are some interesting news sources that a user can subscribe to. These content channels include Stumbleupon, PocketHits (popular content being saved on the Pocket reading service), Audio Content, Video Content, Instagram Popular, Reddit for Flipboard, and Local channels. Content can also be added from RSS feeds a user subscribes to via their Google Reader account. Flipboard selects to display content based upon how popular it is on the web and the users’ connected social networks. Since it supports so many sources, it does a very good job of finding relevant news. The Flipboard interface is probably the most aesthetically pleasing of all the apps reviewed in this post. It sports well-organized pages that animate as you flip through them as if it were a physical magazine. The reading experience for articles is also excellent, with a clean, well-formatted view with easy-to-read text. Flipboard allows saving to Pocket, Instapaper, and Readability. Content is sharable through the most popular social networks including Google Plus. One thing that really annoys me about Flipboard is the panel limitation. If you subscribe to many channels like me, you will soon discover a box that says you have more sources available for viewing. They can be viewed, but not in the same elegant manner as the other sources. It causes the continuity of the app design to break. Since the app’s design is probably its greatest strength, I consider this a major flaw.
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