I’ve been lucky enough to try a number of phones over the years. When you’re reviewing them there’s a number of features and apps to try out, but one I tend to always skip is Flipboard.
It’s available for both Android and iOS and, although it looks very pretty indeed, I’ve ended up defaulting back to my Twitter feed for the “news” I need.
Trouble is, I’m wondering why, because the presentation of this swipe-style magazine interface is far better and much easier on the eye. Images flip across with ease, the text is legible and the layout is far better than the constant downward scrolling of the Twitter and Facebook style interface. This app is your personal magazine. It lets you share stories and you can connect your Instagram, Twitter and Facebook accounts in to make it properly “yours”. You can save magazines and create more magazines merely by choosing videos and pictures from the web.
Sadly, for a lot of the time, if you’re browsing the web a swish and beautiful interface like this isn’t available. However, it is relatively easy to create one and – if you’ve already got something that you’d like beautify and embed in a web page, you can add pictures and embed PDF in HTML too. It’s something I’m looking into for Coolsmartphone.
If Flipboard isn’t your thing, alternatives include Newsify, Pulse news and Newsrepulblic – and it’s an interesting problem for us, the content providers. On the one hand, you want your content to be available to as many people as possible, so having an RSS feed which can be picked up by these apps is essential. However, the people making the glossy and swish “magazines” are effectively building customised magazines using your content, and they add their own ads. It means that they get free content (as do you) but the original content supplier gets very little out of the bargain.