Quick Review: Early Edition RSS Reader for iPad


Glasshouse Apps, makers of the gorgeous Barista and Cellar apps for iPhone and iPod touch is branching out for the iPad with Early Edition RSS [$4.99 - iTunes link] -- and yes, it's gorgeous.

Like Apple itself, they're going for a much more "real world" UI metaphor, in this case a newspaper. The main content is not so much flowed as typeset into place beneath the big, banner headline that's your latest article, and a cascade of older, and thus smaller, articles beneath it.

In landscape mode you get a sidebar similar to the built-in Notes app, with a circle around the currently viewed feed (or all feeds, the top choice). In portrait mode, you get a popover that serves the same function.

There's no Google Reader or Instapaper support yet (see comments, below) but they should be coming. That'll be a major drawback for some, but in the meantime you can add any feed you like with the handy plus button. (I cut and pasted Android Central's feed in from Safari with nary a problem).

Once loaded, tapping on a headline takes you to the RSS version of the article and you can toggle over to the web version in-app. In a nice touch, if you back out of an article and then tap it again, it remembers which state you were last in.

All the text showed up nicely rendered and easy to read, and graphics and even inline YouTube video were right there. I couldn't double tap to get the video full screen, but it played within the page just fine.

Note: they were kind enough to include TiPb's review feed as a default, along with TUAW, Apple Hot News, and some others. Risky, because if they mangled it our thanks could easily have turned into venomous sideways glares. Lucky for all involved, they nailed it.

If you're looking for RSS on your iPad, love good design, and Google Reader and Instapaper aren't "must haves" at this very moment, then check out Early Edition and let us know what you think!

Video and screen shots after the break!

YouTube link

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Rene Ritchie

EiC of iMore, EP of Mobile Nations, Apple analyst, co-host of Debug, Iterate, Vector, Review, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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Reader comments

Quick Review: Early Edition RSS Reader for iPad


Thanks Rene for the fantastic write-up. :) we're so blown away by the positive response we've had already.
To Smite. A. Hippie and Impaler, I just wanted to let you know that Google Reader (and Instapaper) integration were originally on our list of 1.0 features, however as the deadline approached, we realised that if we didn't cut some features we wouldn't make the launch. But rest assured that we're already working on the next update, so watch this space. ;)

B/c of this review and Glasshouse apps comment i will give it a try. Nice write up. Like what i see in the UI. Instapaper and google reader are must haves for me. So get'er done!

I love this app!!! I usually can't stand rss feeds but not any more. Looking forward to future updates. Maybe an. Rss search feature will be added?

Would love to see rss search and google reader integration soon - bought the app two days ago and love it!

If your are looking for an online RSS reader, check out Channelorama. With thousands of available feeds and an option to add new ones, it allows you to manage your feeds in customizable folders. You can personalize the layout of each folder too.