Hands-on: Yahoo News Digest comes to Android
News Digest delivers short, easy reads of the top stories of the day, similar to Circa and Inside. The difference with Yahoo's app, however, is that stories are more in-depth, and it mimics the delivery schedule of newspapers, delivering summaries twice daily at 8 A.M. and 6 P.M. local time.
When it first debuted on iOS, News Digest offered only U.S. and U.K. editions and was restricted to those countries. Now Yahoo has added Canadian and international editions. Serious news hounds can even switch between all four editions to gather news targeted at different audiences.
Hands-on with News Digest
When you first fire up News Digest you are greeted with whichever edition of the digest is most recent. Tapping on the edition date allows you to switch to earlier editions from that week by selecting either the sun or moon icon for each day. You will also see a countdown clock letting you know when the next edition is due.
When I first fired up the app I saw the Wednesday evening edition. But 15 minutes later when the Thursday morning U.S. edition was available I had to manually switch to that version.
On the main screen of the app, you'll be greeted with the top news story for the latest edition. Scrolling down includes another nine top news stories for various beats, including world news, business, politics, and sports. At the top of the main screen you'll find a menu icon where you can access the app's settings, including the ability to switch between U.S., U.K., Canadian, and International editions.
Each news article on the list includes a headline, as well as a brief summary of the main sources cited within the article. Only the top news headline features a photo on the main screen.
At the bottom of the headline list you'll see a counter letting you know which stories you've read in that edition. There's also an option to ask for more news stories by tapping the Read more news link.
Inside the news article
Each news story features a photo, as well an article summarized by Yahoo based on sources such as Agence France-Press (AFP), the Associated Press, Bloomberg, and others. Summaries are then followed by links to more in-depth articles, and augmented with maps, tweets from notable news accounts, Wikipedia articles, and a complete list of news article sources.
How many sources you'll get varies. For an article on the ongoing Russia-Ukraine crisis News Digest used 25 sources, while news about an explosion in Syria included only three.
One of the slickest parts of the app is how the news story scrolls over top of the photo as if they were two different layers. It's a small design decision, but has a very nice effect.
At the top of right of each news story you'll find a share icon, as well as a menu icon to get to the app's Settings as well as send feedback about the app.
That's about all there is to News Digest.
Overall, Yahoo's current events app is a really well-designed app that delivers an at-a-glance view of the day's stories compiled by Yahoo offices in the U.K., U.S., and Malaysia.
The only possible downside is that you only get two editions daily. In other words, this is not the news app for anyone looking for breaking news as it happens, but it's perfect for people who just want a quick summary of the day's big news.
Yahoo says 40 percent of people who download News Digest return to the app daily. Android users can also put a 3x2 News Digest widget on their homescreen (pictured at top) for easy access to the latest news stories from Yahoo.
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