APP OF THE DAY - Taptu (Android)
Do you ever find yourself swamped with information? Too many sites and not enough time to read them all? Do you want to snack on the content of your favourite websites without having to actually visit them?
If this sounds like you, you’re probably reading this via the RSS feed. If that’s your thing, have you ever thought about repackaging all that content and reading it all via an app? Fear not, as today we’re looking at just the thing.
- Android Market
Taptu is available on a number of platforms, but given the current love-in for Honeycomb tablets, we’ve been taking it for a spin on the Motorola Xoom. Taptu is optimised for Honeycomb and given it’s status as an aggregator of content, it’s well suited to the larger screen, and you'll find controls in the action bar as you would with other native Honeycomb apps.
We’ll be honest, it isn’t that different from Pulse that we looked at last month, which also collects and offers you up content from your favourite sites. If you’re using Pulse, you’ll probably be disinclined to swap to Taptu, but it does offers some nice features.
Content is arrayed on scrolling banners, picking up images and titles from your selected sources and giving you the option of clicking through to read more. You’ll get as much content as the source site puts out in its feed, so the results are dependant on what you pick.
Taptu offer up a range of featured and categorised sources for you to pick from, with a link to Google Reader (although when we tested the app this resulted in an error). Once setup, you can rearrange content to your liking, including merging streams.
You could dump all your tech websites into one bucket of gadgety filth, or all your sport fan sites in to one pot. There are some curated feeds already and you can break those apart to get the individual sites if you want to.
You can also search easily for your favourite site to see if a feed can be found. If Taptu can’t find it, you can ask Bing to have a look - often you’ll get a positive result.
Adding a little more interest, you can also consume your own social news by linking up with Facebook or Twitter, as well as getting sharing options back to those networks - as well as any other apps you've got installed as it normal with Android - so it’s easy to tell people what you’ve found interesting, or come back to it later.
Some sites work much better than others and we found some content provided simply offered up the advertising page that sits between a site’s feed and the actual page. It’s irritating because you then have to view it in the browser instead, or just dump the offending sites.
You also get a widget and you can create and customise as many widgets as you want, but we found it rather lacklustre and doesn't yet take advantage of Android 3.1 widget resizing, which could make it much more useful.
Overall it’s a great little app with plenty of versatility that works nicely on Honeycomb and well worth checking out if you like your content from lots of different places.