Review of Local News iPad Apps

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ABC 10News / KGTV10

The KGTV10 news app is a “blown up” iPhone App. This means that, on an iPhone, screen resolution looks good but, blown up to the iPad screen size, photos lose their resolution. Nevertheless, the App is updated pretty regularly.

The layout is what you would expect to find on an iPhone App with a list of about eight articles on the main page. It has the typical sections (i.e., news, weather, sports, and entertainment). At first it appears that that’s all you get but once you click on these major sections you see some additional sections. For example, additional sections like horoscope and “weird news” are included in the entertainment section. The local news section is also a subsection of the news section. The weather section is pretty comprehensive with even a radar and Doppler section.

Advertising is like the KFMB 8 news App using banners on top of the articles.

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FOX 5 San Diego

The FOX 5 news App is also a “blown up” iPhone, however, the resolution of the text on the iPad is very good.

The layout combines the sections and the articles on the main page. It has the typical sections (i.e., news, weather, sports, and entertainment) but also includes local business and even “weird news” but there were no articles in those sections.

Advertising is done as a banner type of advertising at the bottom of the articles.

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KFMB 8 / CBS 8

The KFMB CBS 8 App has both an iPhone App and an iPad App. The iPad App is much more sophisticated than the iPhone App and is not just a blown up iPhone App. The App has your typical sections (i.e., news, weather, traffic, sports, and entertainment) but it also includes local news, California news, and even surf report sections.

The layout is different than most of the other Apps. This App lists about 20 news articles on a sidebar and the main page is dedicated to just one article. If you want to see other articles you click on the menu button at the top and click on the article you want to read.

The photos and graphics are high quality. A nice feature is that you can change the font size in the articles.

Advertising is done as a banner type of advertising on top of the articles.

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NBC SD HD

Like the KFMB CBS 8 App, the NBC SD HD news App this is a pretty sophisticated iPad App. The photos and graphics are high-quality and the app itself has a lot of tabs and sections. The layout of the NBC SD HD App is similar to the UT San Diego and CNN Apps with photos showing you the articles on the main page. There are about 12 articles on this page with the sections located at the top.

The App has your typical sections (i.e., news, weather, traffic, sports, and entertainment) but it also includes local news, California news, traffic map, food and drink, fashion, events, real estate, and and sections. There are also sections called “The Scene” and “SoundDiego.” There is a great variety of articles, however, couldn’t find the great investigative story about the San Ysidro school district that came out just recently.

Font size can be changed and advertising was not noticeable.

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UT San Diego

The UT San Diego news App is not free, you need a subscription to the daily paper to access this App. This means that you also have to sign in each time you open the App. A minor inconvenience but it would be nice to be kept signed in.

The UT San Diego App has a layout very similar to the CNN App. It’s a pretty sophisticated App and the photos for the articles are of a very high-quality. If you have an iPad 3, the photos are like eye candy.

The App has the basic sections of the newspaper: news, sports, business, opinion, weather, traffic, and the arts.

One glaring omission is it’s missing the local news section. All of the news (national and local) are lumped together. As far as content goes, it seems to be missing a majority of of the newspaper with only the “big” articles included. It also seems to be missing the letters to the editor. However all the articles have the comments sections turned on.

Advertising is kept to a minimum and are not at all obnoxious like on the online version.

It also seems to be an iPad only app and not a universal app. Interestingly though there are actually two UT San Diego apps; the other one has the unfortunate name of the UT e-edition. This app shows you the actual print newspaper.

Any news apps missing? Do you have any favorites? Leave a comment or send a note.

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