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Introducing Newseen - A new kind of news reader for Win8/RT

app windows newseen news reader

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#1 +Brandon Live

Brandon Live

    Seattle geek

  • Joined: 08-June 03
  • Location: Seattle, WA

Posted 13 June 2013 - 22:12

Hey everyone. As some of you may know, I left Microsoft back in April to, among other things, spend some time on smaller projects like building apps. I started a company, B-side Software, and a few weeks ago launched Newseen, a news app with a powerful back-end service behind it. Newseen launched in the Windows Store for Windows 8 PCs and Windows RT devices, but you can expect it to show up elsewhere in the coming months, and to continually gain new features along the way. It started out as a paid app, but earlier this week switched to being FREE with in-app advertising. You can also choose to get rid of the ads by purchasing Newseen Pro as an in-app purchase.

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Default theme

Newseen brings together the most talked about news from your favorite categories (i.e. Technology, Business, Politics, etc) and intelligently groups them by topic. Once you've read something, it will be remembered across you devices, and if a story is updated or new articles are written about it, Newseen will highlight them for you and make it easy to see what's new. If you use Twitter, it will pull in tweets from the people you follow and show them as part of the relevant story (where you can retweet or favorite them, and more).

Also, everything about the app and the service is architected for speed, with significant testing and tuning to ensure Newseen is snappy even on ARM-based devices.

For more about Newseen or to get it now, follow the links below:

Newseen in the Windows Store

Newseen.com

Blog post introducing Newseen features

I hope you'll check it out and let me know what you think!


#2 TheExperiment

TheExperiment

    Reality Bomb

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 22:25

Rock on. Installed it, will mess with it later :)

do not know why MSes News app is so....crap.

#3 OP +Brandon Live

Brandon Live

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Posted 17 June 2013 - 17:30

Cool :-) If you have any suggestions, let me know!

#4 Tuishimi

Tuishimi

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  • Joined: 19-November 10
  • OS: Windows 8

Posted 17 June 2013 - 17:38

I'll check it out later...  I cannot get anything from the store just now because I am VPN'd into work... and all my metro apps lose their network connections when I do that (or they THINK they do...).



#5 OP +Brandon Live

Brandon Live

    Seattle geek

  • Joined: 08-June 03
  • Location: Seattle, WA

Posted 17 June 2013 - 19:32

I'll check it out later...  I cannot get anything from the store just now because I am VPN'd into work... and all my metro apps lose their network connections when I do that (or they THINK they do...).


My guess is that your VPN is configured to take all of your internet traffic, and so if the app doesn't have the Intranet permission (which only enterprise targeted apps request) then I bet it gets blocked.

#6 TheExperiment

TheExperiment

    Reality Bomb

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Posted 17 June 2013 - 19:40

Cool :-) If you have any suggestions, let me know!

It is really damn fast but seems like News where you can't configure actual sources in the category.



#7 Geoffrey B.

Geoffrey B.

    LittleNeutrino

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  • OS: Windows 8.1u1
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Posted 17 June 2013 - 19:54

it looks nice however, it is just not the style in which i like to view my news feeds.



#8 OP +Brandon Live

Brandon Live

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  • Joined: 08-June 03
  • Location: Seattle, WA

Posted 17 June 2013 - 19:59

It is really damn fast but seems like News where you can't configure actual sources in the category.

Right now the app doesn't expose the list of sources in each category. They're being added to all the time, though. I am looking at adding more customization options in coming updates (i.e. to filter out sources, for example), but I want to ensure I can do it in a way that doesn't compromise on performance or scalability. Likely the next addition will be the ability to easily switch between views of a single category, with more advanced features following that.

I'm also weighing the priority of additional features and controls for the Win8 app versus work on web (especially mobile/phone) and clients for other platforms (WP8, iOS, and eventually Android).

it looks nice however, it is just not the style in which i like to view my news feeds.


Thanks for checking it out. Is that because you prefer the inbox style where you see things organized by feed instead of topic? Or because you like to see every individual feed entry and not just the newest and most talked about ones?

I do understand that this sort of news app isn't for everyone, and that some just prefer the inbox approach. But the more I can understand about how different folks like to read their news, the better I think I can make it. Hence the questions :-)

#9 +Audien

Audien

    Software Eng.

  • Joined: 30-December 03
  • Location: Seattle, WA
  • OS: Windows 8.1/Mac OSX
  • Phone: iPhone 5S

Posted 17 June 2013 - 20:02

Nice!  Installing this on my RT to give it a try.  I didn't realise you left MS either. :)



#10 Tuishimi

Tuishimi

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  • Joined: 19-November 10
  • OS: Windows 8

Posted 17 June 2013 - 21:24

O.K.  Grabbed it!  It's not bad.  I like simple and it definitely is simple.  I basically went for specific sports.

 

One thing I would/could wish for (and I know this is nigh on impossible to do) is to have the actual articles parsed into a pop up pane of some sort.  So when you click on the "more..." link, instead of opening the browser and sending you to the article, the text of the article and perhaps any images embedded in the text is shown in a window, not separate from the app.

 

But that's a huge change and that would be a ton of work parsing out different websites for the main content, etc.



#11 ctrl_alt_delete

ctrl_alt_delete

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  • Joined: 18-February 10

Posted 17 June 2013 - 21:25

needs a better color scheme



#12 Steve B.

Steve B.

    Neowinian British One

  • Tech Issues Solved: 5
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  • Location: United Kingdom
  • OS: Windows 8.1
  • Phone: Apple iPhone 4S

Posted 17 June 2013 - 21:34

needs a better color scheme


I'm not convinced that you downloaded it, since there are multiple colour options available...

I'm downloading it now, will update my post shortly with opinions.

Edit: It's really nice, a way to summarise the news articles that come up on your Twitter feed, I was expecting an RSS reader when I first saw the thread title. Interface is clean and looks good, and you can see content at a glance without having to rely on 140 characters.

Available colours are good, maybe lightening the cream for the Paper White theme would be better, and possibly using a Serif font? Overall, pretty good :)

#13 OP +Brandon Live

Brandon Live

    Seattle geek

  • Joined: 08-June 03
  • Location: Seattle, WA

Posted 18 June 2013 - 00:05

needs a better color scheme

 

Did you try all the current options? What additional color options would you like to see? I am planning to add more.



#14 OP +Brandon Live

Brandon Live

    Seattle geek

  • Joined: 08-June 03
  • Location: Seattle, WA

Posted 03 August 2013 - 19:30

FYI, there's a new update out which improves the "open in browser" experience a bit on Windows 8.1. The app switches to snapped mode next to the browser, and lets you control the browser, clicking on different links in story (or view the top article for other stories). It's pretty basic for now, but when they let us submit actual Windows 8.1 targeted apps to the store, I plan to invest more in this part of the experience.

 

I've experimented before with embedded browser views, but so far they're too problematic (primarily because they run on the same thread as the hosting window). Unfortunately I don't think Windows 8.1's WebView will fix this, but I'm holding out a little bit of hope that it will :-) I may also enable it as an option, particularly for faster machines. You just run the risk of a site with bad javascript hanging the app (whereas in the browser it can restart the tab and such).

 

I'm also working another update which adds some new features and color schemes (and refines the existing ones a bit). If anyone has color suggestions, let me know. I'm thinking of changing the default from the blue/black one, to a new variant of the black theme. Haven't decided yet for sure though.



#15 Nazmus Shakib Khandaker

Nazmus Shakib Khandaker

    Neowinian

  • Joined: 03-April 12

Posted 23 October 2013 - 12:52

Awesome! Thanks for sharing. I'll check it out.



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