Rediff.com has launched an Android app for its Rediff News service (h/t – @beingpractical). Available in the Google Play Store as a free download, the app allows users to browse through updates across various news categories like Business, Movies, Sports, Cricket, Get Ahead, Travel, Lifestyle, and Careers among others.
Interface: We tried the app on a Galaxy Nexus running Android 4.1 and felt that the app interface is somewhat reminiscent of the popular news reader app Pulse, featuring a similar tiled interface with an image and an article headline in each tile. The home interface consists of the headlines across various news categories from the portal and one can scroll through the updates vertically, although we noticed the app doesn’t feature an infinite scroll and limits one to view only the latest 24 articles on the portal.
There is also a horizontally scrolling navigation bar at the top, which allows one to select any news section like Business, Cricket, Sports, Entertainment and among others to view updates from that specific category. In addition, there is also a dedicated section for Rediff’s lifestyle destination GetAhead, which offers news updates and features across various sections like Glamour, Health & Fitness, Careers, Personal Finance and Travel among others.
Article Interface: One can tap on any specific tile to view the respective story. We noticed that the app only provides an excerpt for the story with a link to read the full article. Tapping on the link opens the article in an in-app browser, allowing one to read the article and view slideshows (if any). Since this is an official Rediff app, we believe Rediff should’ve removed the additional step to access an article and rendered the full article within the app itself. Rediff should focus on delivering a good app experience rather than looking to garner extra pageviews.
Sharing of Articles: We quite liked the fact that the app allowed us to share articles through Android’s default share intent option, since it will enable users to share any specific article through various apps installed on their Android phones, rather than sticking to a specific sharing mechanism.
Besides this, there is a small refresh button at the top and a small gears icon which opens the setting menu to offer various customization options like the ability to turn off image downloading to reduce data usage, and play a sound alert for every update notification, although there is currently no option to customize the sound alert. The app also allows one to set a specific refresh time (1hr, 3 hrs, 6 hrs, Daily, Manual) for the app, although we were glad that the app was set to manual refresh by default.