As we edge ever closer to the launch of iOS 9, one of the biggest and most notable features that’s set to join it on launch is suddenly beginning to build a bit of traction. The brand new Apple News app is set to find its way onto your iPhone soon enough, but is it the future of mobile news?
Update: Read the iOS 9.3 preview and discover what's next for your iPhone or iPad.
Could this latest piece of smart software from the guys and girls at Cupertino really help inform you of what’s going on in the world? Or is it an app which will quickly find its way into the doldrums of that page four ‘Utilities’ folder?
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Brought in to help stir up the mobile news app market, Apple News is likely set to be taking on BlinkFeed on the HTC One line-up for the title of the ultimate source of smartphone news. That’s no easy task, but it’s certainly making a good go of it, and it looks as if it could be set to take the biscuit.
Coming pre-installed on your Apple home screen, existing users will need to sacrifice one of those first page apps on the new feature, but it is well worthy of such an honour. As with many apps from Apple, you can’t delete it either, so you’re stuck with it either way regardless of just how strapped for internal space you happen to be.
The app itself is incredibly simple, upon opening it up you get barraged by a selection of publishers ranging from the biggest names in the business, down to some of your smaller publications. These cover a massive array of subjects, meaning that there’s pretty much a limitless selection of stories to get through.
Designed to offer the rich and immersive experience of print mixed with a digital interactive feel, Apple News looks brilliant on both iPhone and iPad, with publishers having the opportunity to use creative designs for the service.
Once you get reading, the app tracks your interests and suggests articles that you’ll be interested in after you’ve finished with one story. We normally question features like this, which often end up offering us ‘iffy at best’ selections upon completion, but Apple has nailed this down.
It doesn’t matter just how diverse your tastes are, we always found something else to read, and the quality of the publications was truly top notch.
The key to Apple News’s quality is clearly thanks to the human curation that the iPhone manufacturer is employing with the app.
For those not aware, Apple has done the same kind of thing with Apple Music, where people in the know are the ones suggesting what you should listen to or read next. This means that it’s genuine editors who are picking what makes the cut on the app, instead of a fancy algorithm, which tend to be a bit hit or miss.
All of Apple’s editors are experienced and passionate journalists, not tech-based interns, so quality is at an all-time high. This means that the stories you read will have been proofed and collated by a crack team, providing you with a superb reading experience.
Although humans are prone to the odd mistake, and there are some ethical questions being raised (will we be seeing any anti-Apple stories make the cut, for example?), it makes for a very well rounded and solid experience on the whole.
Offering a fluid and fruitful experience, Apple News should have your current batch of mobile news apps shuddering in fear. Instead of force feeding you stories that you should be interested in, it finds out what interests you and softly offers you what it thinks you’ll like.
On top of this, if you do fancy spreading your wings, you can simply explore all of what Apple News has to offer with a brief button tap which will get you informed on everything from politics to fashion.
Plus, with creative designs being implemented to keep you interested in stories and genuine editors working behind the scenes to keep the quality high, there are few apps which can really match Apple’s latest creation on the news front.
Also, as ever, Apple is also keeping things nice and simple, letting you make your way around the app easily and without any fuss, something which plenty of other apps don’t manage. Simply put, Apple News could well be the best way to take in news ever, so if you feel like you need to be hit with some more knowledge, iOS 9 could be an ideal update for you!
Written by Luke Hatfield