As the number of iPad users begins to increase, so the news sector begins to move more of its content behind ‘paywalls’ – they want you to pay to read the news. Fortunately, developers are creative people, and free news applications are beginning to flood the market, and these applications are becoming more functional and creative – as is the case with Zite, an application that checks more than 500,000 sites for news stories.
‘Hitpad‘ has now arrived on the market as a free and easy-to-use application to bring the news to your tablet. Using proprietary algorithms, it recognizes your reading habits and determines the content in which you have an interest on the web in the various media. ‘Hitpad’ then displays them on the iPad screen according to topic, and as you choose one of the listed topics you get a screen full of relevant information, videos and tweets. Then as you tap on the individual header you are transferred to the relevant source web page through the built-in browser of ‘Hitpad’.
On opening the application, you are greeted by a clean graphical interface to help you navigate through the application, and to share the stories on Facebook, Twitter or by e-mail. The news stories have been found by Google, with their relevant websites, so it is possible for the application to quickly find related stories for you.
‘Hitpad’ has sections for Entertainment, Sports, US News, Business, and Technology, but these are locked so it is not possible to create additional sections. As a tool for discovering news discovery tool it could prove to be very useful, especially with its ability to teach itself about your reading habits. And as it is free, it is worthwhile to download so you can share your experience with us.