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apps

Longform.org Releasing New App Today

longformSet your timers, friends. Today Apple is set to release its new operating system (probably around the traditional 1ET/10PT hour) so your phones will be a buzzing. Once it’s installed, you can also download the longform.org app, which they are releasing today with the new iOS.

Their current app costs $2.99, this one will be free and will include around 1,000 publishers. Users will be able to ‘follow’  publishers and other users, creating the home newsfeed. Capital New York reported that Longform founder Max Linksy sees the app as a move to adapt to new technologies, and making reading as easy and beautiful as possible: “We’re trying to make it so you don’t feel bad everytime you spend ten minutes on your phone.”

Do you ever feel that bad about it?

h/t Capital New York

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AJ+ Targets the Millennial News Consumer

AJ+This week, Al Jazeera launched a new app, AJ+, geared towards the millennial news consumer.

The app centers around stacks, with video content, chat options, and quizzes and polls. It’s an immersive news experience, focused on context. But what’s really interesting is the AJ+ editorial’s team methods. The content on the app isn’t pulled from Al Jazeera and repackaged for the app — it’s specifically for the platform.

They have an editorial team and and engagement team; they call their morning meeting an “engage-atorial” meeting, as a perfect blend of the two. Executive Director of Strategy and Development, Dr. Yaser Bishr says:

The core changes are in the workflow. We give a lot of power to the engagement team and our journalists on the ground that make it unique…Icome from a software background, so I can talk forever about the features of the app. I look at the apps and everything around it as the way to tell the story. The change is the way we operate.

The have journalists on the ground all over the world and regional fellows: they divided the world into six regions to have a fellow in each one, to report on important stories and events, but also to “manage and curate,” as Bishr puts it, a social, local community in that region. They received over 3,000 applications for the six positions. Bishr says that those who didn’t make it have also connected over social media and have their own, organic group to share news.

The goal of the app and the AJ+ team is to, according to Bishr, to change “not just the way news is gathered and produced, but also consumed.”

You can follow them @AJPlus or on Facebook.

 

 

Do You Yo? And Should Your Newsroom Be Yo-ing?

yo-its-that-simpleIt’s getting harder and harder for me to keep up with what the kids are doing these days, but I’ve at least heard about ‘Yo’. If you haven’t heard of it yet, the app is a messaging service that bases its platform around the frequent sending of a two-letter word: “Yo.”

No fancy filtered photos. No emojis. Just one, single greeting (with possibly a link/short hashtagged tack-on, thanks to a recent update). Whenever you want to get someone’s attention, you simply send “Yo,” and ideally, your straightforward message would notify your friend, the receiver, as effectively as a text message or email might. According to the American Journalism Review‘s Cory Blair, the app has seen 2.6 million downloads since April 1 of this year. For whatever reason, people are really into “Yo-ing” eachother.

Reported Blair, the Washington Post‘s audience strategy and social media teams want to experiment with using the Yo app for letting readers know when stories have been published. As if Twitter’s 140-character limit doesn’t present enough of a communication challenge, Yo provides even less space for disseminating information. The idea is to have WaPo readers and social media followers who use the Yo app to follow the newspaper on Yo. Then when they have a story to share, they will send a “Yo” to subscribers, and those folks get a notification on their phone. No need to open up (or pay for) a news app to get instant access to news anymore. Others including NBC Nightly News and the Nieman Lab are doing it, too, Blair wrote. Publishers can choose how and when they want to “Yo” — it could only be for beat-specific stories or at a certain time of day.

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What NYT Now Means For the Times and Mobile Journalism

Screen Shot 2014-03-26 at 12.07.42 PMThe New York Times has been a bit slow getting with the program, as mobile offerings go. NYT Now, an $8 app billed monthly, will offer top stories as curated by Times editors on mobile phones (it’s not clear yet when an iPad version is coming) starting April 2.

I had heard rumors about NYT Now when Executive Editor Jill Abramson and other top dogs from the Times announced the app and other mobile products to be rolled out at SXSW earlier this month, but it seems now the Grey Lady is ready to move away from an “all the news that’s fit to print” mentality to a “fast and engaging news experience” mindset, noted TechCrunch’s Ingrid Lunden.

NYT Now will feature quick summaries of the day’s biggest Times stories (“Morning and Evening Briefings”) as well as recaps of aggregated pieces from around the web, and it will all be produced by newsroom journalists on a mobile-only team. The $8 app gets you access to the full version of any story inside the app, but don’t expect an endless supply of Times journalism.

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Newsdeck Helps Companies Share News

Does your company still share news the old way, via long email threads or embedded links? Well, a free corporate news sharing app from Newsdeck just might be the answer.

newsdeck post picFounded in 2007 and based in Luxembourg, NEWSDECK bills itself as more than simply a news curation tool and more of a “productivity app intended for the enterprise world.” Read more

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