For those of you in the UK still waiting on Facebook to launch its widely-publicised Paper app, which combines your Facebook feed with the news sources of your choice to make something a whole lot nicer to look at, Yahoo! has nipped in with Yahoo News Digest.
The app is a news aggregator in essence, taking content tailored to your interests from all over the web and delivering them to you in two two easy to stomach portions called Digests – one in the morning and one in the evening. It utilises the technology picked up from Yahoo’s highly-publicised £18m purchase of analytical tool Summly.
It’s a nice way of being presented with the news. Yahoo! is clearly aware that most people tend to check the news in the morning and in the evenings, and rarely in-between (lets be honest, your lunch hour is reserved for Reddit and Buzzfeed).
To make it even more compact, each article is composed of different ‘Atoms’. What with the average smartphone user’s time constraints (be they externally imposed or simply due to a short attention span), Atoms ensure that you can take in the overall message of a story without trawling through a wall of text. Images, infographics, videos and quotes all combine to present to you a compact but comprehensive overview of an issue.
Yes, print journalism purists are probably shuddering at the very concept, but the sad truth is that we live in an age where the desire for listicles is rapidly outgrowing the desire for articles. Yahoo News Digest is a happy merging of the two schools of thought, with snappy, visually engaging content used as a vessel for ‘proper’ journalism.
In its one day since release it has shot to the top of the UK iOS app store (and it’s also available for you folks in the US, and an Android version should be on its way soon), so if you find yourself drifting out of touch with current events, you may want to give it a look. If you haven’t got Flipboard already, that is.