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App Review: Galatta News App For iPhone (Updated)

Dot Com Infoway‘s Galatta, an English magazine and website focusing on the South Indian film industry has relaunched its iPhone app, which is now essentially a news feed reader across the site’s different language/industry wise news offerings. It’s a free app but includes advertisements, and can be downloaded from the iTunes app store.

Interface & Features: The app is not optimized for the iPhone 4 and 4S retina display, and is an eye sore. The navigation is nothing home to talk about, and sports a horizontal slider that features category buttons which have to be tapped to switch to a particular section, unlike a lot of other similar iOS and Android apps that allow users to swipe horizontally through the sections. Each section has a ‘pull down to refresh’ content option. Individual news items open in a new, non-full screen view, accompanying buttons for social sharing on Facebook, Twitter and E-mail, increasing & decreasing text size and bookmarking at the bottom; and back and previous-next story buttons at the top. Swiping horizontally through stories under a common section is possible.


There’s a small gears icon next to the name of the app which hides saved/bookmarked stories, a search feature and an e-mail link to report bugs, but no other settings.

Content: The app offers news updates from the site in the form of short snacking content across Hindi, Tamil, Teleugu, Malayalam, Kannada and English film news categories, with a picture accompanying each of these stories. Even when the story’s about a new movie trailer, it links it to its website.  So, there’s nothing else apart from these updates that the app features.


Our Take: We just don’t understand the purpose of investing in an app when the same could have been achieved through an HTML5 mobile website. We’ve not been keeping a track but we remember that the app had made it to the iTunes Top 20’s books section, in 2009.

The Galatta magazine is available on Magzter for subscription, but we wonder why they didn’t include other content such as wallpapers, videos, trailers and games in the app, since a lot of it is available on their website. This is more or less a useless news reader without any value-adds.

Do give us a heads-up and tell us about the other content based apps that you use for keeping track of news related to the South Indian film industry.

Update: We’ve received a note from Galatta saying that they’re planning to add the following features in the next version of the app : Related News, links from existing news, Push Notifications, Photos module,Top News, Trailers, Videos and Movies.


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