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Old 06-08-2010, 06:08 PM   #1
scottjl
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App Review: NewsRack

Decided to do another app review after someone saying they weren't familiar with my favorite RSS reader, NewsRack.

NewsRack is a RSS (Really Simple Syndication) reader application that is available as a universal binary (will work on your iPhone, your iPod Touch and your iPad) from the App Store for $4.99. It features a "Newspaper" type display along with a more traditional list view of news articles, will sync with a Google Reader account (which has its own very well done HTML5 based interface), or quickly subscribe to a feed if you paste in a URL.

You can read a summary of the article in NewsRack itself, or if you like you can share it via Twitter or Facebook, open the article in Safari, email it to someone, save it in Instapaper, ReadItLater or Delicious Bookmarks. You can also flag an article to be saved in NewsRack itself and come back to it at a later time. There simply is no excuse for forgetting about an article you wanted to come back to!

Performance is snappy on both my 3GS and iPad, it works over WiFi and a 3G connection, although downloading feed and article images will be slower but these can be filtered out by by enabling the Google Mobilizer proxy setting. If you find you no longer want to track a feed you can remove it quickly as well.

I primarily use it on my iPad in landscape orientation, it has a view similar to the Mail.app, a list of your feeds on the left with the articles browsing on the right side. This makes it fast and easy to catch up on morning news while I eat breakfast.

There really isn't anything I dislike about the application, it does what it is supposed to without too many bells. Development on it has been slow but steady, the author has been responsive to the one support question I emailed him. I have not had any crashes. It has gotten slightly confused when I leave large holes of unread articles in my feeds, probably a bad idea, so I started saving those in ReadItLater. The iPad version does not include the little newspaper view, that is only on the iPhone/Touch, which is ok with me.

If you're a RSS pro, or just starting out with RSS feeds, and are looking for a good app to read and manage your news on, check out NewsRack. It earned a prized spot on my iPad's dock.


screen shots are from an iPhone, the iPad is similar.
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Old 06-09-2010, 05:17 AM   #2
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It's too bad that these appmakers don't make a free app for testing. That's why i've waited for the release of mobilerss on the ipad. Which i'm familiar with on the iphone

The most important thing of that rss-app is that it syncs and download images on the background. You can continue reading in the meantime. This also means that it can sync/download when connected, and you can read it offline.
This is of course not mentioned in any app description, so I don't know if newsrack does that too.
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Old 06-09-2010, 09:31 AM   #3
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yes. newsrack downloads images and articles in the background. you can control in the settings how much it will download in the background and cache as well.

newsrack was pretty popular on the iphone, one of the bonuses of it being universal is you automatically have an ipad version if you previously used it. it's hard to come out with a free/trial version of a rssreader, unless they limit it to the number of feeds or articles, or plaster it with ads. i agree, if you don't have any rss reader the choices and decision to pick one can be overwhelming because there aren't really any demos. why reviews like mine and athlonkmf's on MobileRSS HD might come in useful.
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Old 06-10-2010, 11:22 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by athlonkmf View Post
It's too bad that these appmakers don't make a free app for testing. That's why i've waited for the release of mobilerss on the ipad. Which i'm familiar with on the iphone

The most important thing of that rss-app is that it syncs and download images on the background. You can continue reading in the meantime. This also means that it can sync/download when connected, and you can read it offline.
This is of course not mentioned in any app description, so I don't know if newsrack does that too.
Seems to be a fair number of complaints about it on Itunes. Before spending more $$ you might like to check out FeeddlerRSS. No pictures but it works flawlessly on my iPad and syncs with Google reader. Works for me, and it's free. Course probably not what you are looking for since you are looking for one with images.

They do have a Pro app for $4.99. So there are choices out there! I was a little dissapointed that the newsRack for Ipad does not have the "newspaper" rack. Course that is only eye candy but we like eye candy! LOL

Last edited by MsAstoria; 06-10-2010 at 11:35 AM. Reason: added more comments
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Old 06-10-2010, 12:14 PM   #5
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Seems to be a fair number of complaints about it on Itunes. Before spending more $$ you might like to check out FeeddlerRSS. No pictures but it works flawlessly on my iPad and syncs with Google reader. Works for me, and it's free. Course probably not what you are looking for since you are looking for one with images.

They do have a Pro app for $4.99. So there are choices out there! I was a little dissapointed that the newsRack for Ipad does not have the "newspaper" rack. Course that is only eye candy but we like eye candy! LOL
I've tried feeddler first, but it's the worst rss reader i've tried. It has all then bad things i've talked about. It syncs and download on the foreground, whenyoi open an article, it is then when it download images.
Not much interoperation with third party services.
And really... It looks much worse. Just a long list.
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Old 06-10-2010, 12:27 PM   #6
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I'm waiting to see how Reeder for iPad is.
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Old 06-10-2010, 12:55 PM   #7
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everyone has their preference. pulse is very popular, but i want the news, not the very good looking little squares. i choose function over fashion in this case. plus pulse is limited to 20 feeds (intentionally says the authors, it's supposed to be "relaxing"). just didn't meet my needs. i'm glad we have options!
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Old 06-10-2010, 04:54 PM   #8
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For a feed reader, NewsRack earned a spot on both my iPad and iPhone as well.
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Old 06-10-2010, 05:17 PM   #9
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I really like Early Edition. Sets up my feed news in a newspaper looking format and is easy to click through to original articles that interest me. In portrait mode, the feed index disappears leaving a very pleasant news reader.
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