I love reading blogs and news online. That was one of my biggest reasons for adding an iPad to my collection. With that being said, my online reading experience is definitely related to what I’m using to read my RSS feeds. In comes The Early Edition.
Developed by Glasshouse Apps, The Early Edition is a fantastic and gorgeous app that converts your blog feeds into a simulated newspaper environment. It is definitely in a class of its own.
As of version 1.1 The Early Edition now gives you the option of importing feeds from Google Reader or an OPML file, discover feed URLs by entering web links, and even organize your feeds into sections.
When you open up the application you’ll start by loading in your feeds. As a default The Early Edition actually loads in feeds for you, in case you haven’t built up a pile of links yet and would just like to catch up on popular news sources. Then what The Early Edition does is random pulls from your feeds sources and then converts the articles into different displays and layouts, simulating a newspapers like feel to the application. The end result is a very pleasant take on a traditional RSS Feed Reader.
From there you can virtually flip through the different pages as you continue to read links that are available to you. If you want to read more on a link, simply click on the news article and it will load that into a new page for you to read more in depth. Then if you want to read the original version of the article (and not the default feed version), you’ll be able to click the button to View Original where it proceeds to open the actual website for you.
If you’d like to share any news articles with other people, you have a few options to do that in The Early Edition. You can send it to Instapaper, copy the link to the article, and also email the article to someone.
When pulling feeds you also have a few options on how much you’re retrieving at once. You can pull feeds just for today only, for all dates, and even pull everything since your last fetch. If you’re a continuous reader, there is a built in option to refresh your news feeds while keeping the application open. Another cool addition is that you can actually pull articles from dates that you have used the app & pulled feed from in the past. So if you’re looking for an article that you just read the other day it’s just a click away!
Overall I’m super impressed with this application and it’s very obvious that the developers put a lot of hard work into making this a top-notch app for the iPad.
My only suggestions would be to add in more sharing options because I personally like to share (or sometimes overshare icon smile The Early Edition iPad App Review .. ) links to articles on both Twitter and facebook. I also like to click the share link, within Google Reader, so that people who follow me through Buzz can see the links as well. In addition, it would be nice to mark items as read on a page (which would sync back to Google Reader) so when I pull up the web application I can see what’s been read and what has not.
All in all, The Early Edition is a gorgeous app that really makes your feed reading experience that much better. It is currently selling for the bargain price of $4.99 and you’ll see that it’s a bargain once you start using this and realizing everything it has to offer. If you enjoy reading RSS feeds and/or using Google Reader, this may be the app for you.