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Print media isn’t what it used to be; nowadays, whippersnappers can fire up their iPads to read news faster than ever. Yet there’s something timeless about the classic newspaper layout and feel, something that hasn’t yet been replaced by glitzy and glossy mail-like readers.
Just look at The Early Edition, an RSS feeder created by Glasshouse Apps. It’s fast, sleek and designed to mimic the aesthetics of a newspaper.
Though The Early Edition offers a list of features as long as a Sunday paper, its most exceptional quality is its distinct newspaper visual-style. In portrait mode, it feels seamless and uncomplicated, slightly less so in landscape mode due to a distinctly modern sidebar (who reads a paper sideways, anyway?).
A little hurried to make the a deadline, The Early Edition iPad app was rushed out the door lacking several key features like Google Reader integration and customizable groupings. But now, with the recent 1.1 update, the feed aggregator has almost all of the features users could hope for.
With the update comes the ability to import OPML folders and subscriptions from your Google Reader account. Simply enter your Google Reader username and password, and voila, all your interests preserved in beautiful newspaper form.
Updating feeds is a breeze, too. For the most part, it’s a simple matter of entering a site’s URL, say www.maclife.com, and allowing The Early Edition to use the new “feed discovery” tool to find the feeds for you. If the newspaper format gets old, the Early Edition can display the page in website form with the press of a button.
The Early Edition’s straightforward and unglamorous approach to RSS feeds is more of an advantage than a hindrance. However, the inability to mark a feed as read might make long reading sessions cumbersome. The Early Edition might be a good starting point for people unfamiliar with RSS, as it comes jam-packed with recommended feeds.
The Early Edition’s newspaper format is more than just a gimmick; it’s an attractive and effective way to navigate heaps of feeds.
The Early Edition
COMPANY: Glasshouse Apps
REQUIREMENTS: iPad with iPhone OS 3.2 or later
Classic newspaper style. Compatible with Google Reader and OPML. Tons of feeds already at your disposal.
No ability to mark a feed as read. RSS feeds without thumbnails don’t look good. Horizontal reading doesn’t seem as cohesive.