I liked Editor’s Choice

17. October 2010 § 1 Comment


So the New York Times has released a new, more complete application for the iPad. Hearing about it, I had some mixed feelings: The bare bone version of the paper aka “Editor’s Choice”, available from the App Store since May, was one of the apps I used the most on the iPad. Granted, it had its limitations, but it was pefectly suitable for reading up on the latest news, browsing feature stories and getting some fresh commentary for a half hour on weekdays and a full hour or so on weekends. Granted, they didn’t really know what to do with really long magazine pieces (one b/w screen after another), but that was a minor deficiency compared to, among others, the great sharing tools (Twitter, Facebook, Email etc.) and the picture galleries.

So, what about the new application? At first glance, nothing has changed much, apart of much more content being offered (as Steve Jobs apparently pushed the NYT to do), leading to a more complicated navigation across sections. A closer look reveals some additional, minor changes: Columns are wider and the font turned out leaner, what makes reading more agreeable. A nice bar at the bottom lets you stay in touch with the top news while reading an article. There’s more advertising (congrats to the sales guys). The sharing tools are still the same, as are the photo galleries and the nice video playbacks. But then, browsing through the new app, I got lost several times (it also crashed twice on me, which will be remedied soon, I expect).

In general, I didn’t get the same easy gratification as with Editor’s Choice. The huge amount of copy overwhelmed me. The result: I asked myself wether I will miss the predecessor? Yes I will, at least for some time. And this feeling of lack will definitely return stronger the day the new app will come with a heavy price tag (which i supposed to happen quite soon), and the free Editor’s Choice version won’t be around anymore. (Oh, and by the way: The “Weddings and celebrations” section is the last thing I would have included in an iPad app.)

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