With all the recent innovations in tablet displays, the best tablet (whether by Lenovo, Apple, or Samsung) will feature a screen that is better than ever. If there is one type of app that will change the way you interact with your tablet and allow you to get the most of its beautiful screen, it’s a visual content aggregator. Instead of checking your social networks, news sites, and blogs site by site to get the latest updates, visual content aggregators compile all your interests into one visually stunning, magazine-like package that is easy to use and automatically updated.
Until recently, popular content aggregators like Feedly focused solely on collecting text-based articles via RSS. We have also seen social media aggregators like tweetdeck and hootsuite that process a great deal of information for so called “power users” of sites like Facebook and Twitter. But with the rise of photo-rich sites like Pinterest, finding creative ways to display visual content has begun to take precedence. So now there’s a new type of content aggregator on the scene, and it’s visual.
The most popular of these new visual content aggregator apps are Google’s Currents and Flipboard, and they excel at creating incredible visual experiences because they don’t have to do anything else: all the photos, features, and articles come from aggregated sites. So while organizations like The Atlantic magazine, Reuters or National Geographic are hard at work creating things for you to read and publishing stunning photos, the people behind Google Currents and Flipboard are focused on one and only one thing: providing the most visually compelling and intuitive platform for enjoying your favorite content.
Google Currents – available on all Android devices, phones and tablets – is as powerful as it is intuitive. That’s saying a lot. You’ll discover this by subscribing to any number of websites within minutes of downloading the app, each free of charge. The next step – seeing how Google Currents has put everything together for you in magazine-like fashion – is as visually stunning as it is easy to use. Finding each of your subscriptions neatly tucked into the left side of the screen, your eye is quickly drawn to the high-resolution photo in the center of your screen. You soon discover that switching from one publication is as easy as a quick swipe to the right, while scrolling downwards will allow you to see the full range of content available from your chosen sites. You’ll be amazed at the visual customizations possible with Google Currents and will easily be able to produce the best tablet browsing experience for you, no matter your interests.
Flipboard is Google Currents’ more social cousin. One of its coolest features is its integration with your Facebook other social media profiles. Most people who check either of the social networks often are used to having to open a new tab or window on their browser if they want to see what their friends are up to. That’s no longer the case with Flipboard. The app treats your friends’ updates and photos as if they were content on any other website you might want to subscribe to, mixing them in with the news articles, photos and recommended content the app already regularly delivers to you. The app is available on iPad as well as on Android devices and has recently been optimized for iPad mini.
Even though Flipboard has its drawbacks – downloading content for offline reading require a third-party app, for instance – the digital magazine experience it offers makes it clear that the recent transition from textual, RSS feed content aggregators to visual content aggregators was a welcome evolution. One thing that’s certain is that Flipboard’s gorgeous visual layout will have you falling in love with your tablet all over again.