iPhone: Read all about it!

Danny Gorog
16 August, 2010
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If you’re into reading news on the go then you’ll love the range of options that the iPhone provides. Mobile Safari, the built-in web browser, provides a great way to surf the web, but websites designed for large screens can still load slowly and be difficult to navigate.

Because of this problem, many websites now present a mobile version of their site to the iPhone which makes surfing easier.

But if you want a better way to read the news then check out these two news reading apps:

Reeder ($3.99)

This is a new RSS reader app that syncs with Google Reader. Take my word, I’ve tried many RSS reader apps and Reeder is the best by a mile.

For one, it’s fast. As long as you’re connected to the net, either by Wi-Fi or 3G, you’ll find Reeder fast and responsive. Other apps I’ve tried freeze up while downloading the latest feed but Reeder just keeps going.

In terms of syncing Reeder does it all. It will sync your unread items but you can also get it to sync your friends’ shared items, your shared items and even articles you’ve already read. Reeder introduces a clever style of notifications by using the status bar (where your time and Wi-Fi signals are) to let you know what it’s doing.

But probably my favourite Reeder feature is the services menu. With one tap you can send a link to email (in-app), Twitter, Instapaper or ReadItLater, share it with Google or copy the link.

As you’d expect from any good iPhone app, Reeder is fast to load and also remembers where you were when you had to exit the app, making it very approachable. (You can also check out our full review of Reeder for iPhone and iPad here.)

Reeder is great for RSS feeds but what do you do if you want to read more traditional newspapers? The answer is use an app called PressReader.

PressReader (Free)

This is a free universal app – so it works on both the iPhone and iPad – that lets you read over 1500 of the world’s most popular newspapers presented as full content digital replicas with their original layout.

To navigate you flip through pages and then zoom in on any page or article that looks interesting. Depending on the publication you can tap on the headlines and read a text version of the article.

In the ‘Australia’ category most of the daily papers are available including The Herald Sun, The Australian and The Sydney Morning Herald.

When you first start the app you’ll get a seven-day trial that lets you download as many papers as you want for a week. Then, each paper costs $1.19. That’s less than the retail cost of all papers, but beware as many papers split the sections up as different issues. For example the weekend magazines (like GoodWeekend) are also charged for, but the benefit is you only pay for the sections you actually want to read.

There are some subscription plans too. For example, you can buy 30 credits for US$10 (about $12), or opt for the all-you-can-download package for US$29 (about $33) per month.

You can also visit the pressdisplay.com website to read all the news you subscribe to, plus more. While you’re there, look at the green statistic in the top right hand corner that tells you how many trees have been saved. When I checked it was over 90,000!

Using PressReader is a great experience and means you don’t have to leave your warm bed on Sunday morning to read the paper.

This article originally appeared in the July issue of Australian Macworld magazine.

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