BlackBerry News for the BlackBerry PlayBook is actually one of my favorite applications for the BlackBerry tablet. Rather than presenting all of your news items in lists of lists of lists, News shows your RSS feeds laid out like a magazine. Complete with images, headlines, and inspired layouts, BlackBerry News is a beautiful (and efficient) way of viewing your articles.
Version 1.1 brings quite a number of improvements to the application.
- Read articles are now marked as read
- Portrait mode support for all screens in application
- ‘New' content indicator on home screen
- Ability to update channels through data tethering
- Ability to switch channels while in magazine view
- Ability to go to previous/next article in the article view
- Ability to view a feed immediately once subscribed to it
Not only that, but the once-laborious update process - for gathering new news - appears to be much more streamlined. The app completes its updates much more quickly than before and continues to gather data even after that "updating" screen disappears. Switching between articles or feeds once required a tap of the back button. No longer; switch between articles by tapping the arrows at the bottom or between feeds by swiping down from the top.
Version 1.1 of the BlackBerry News App for the PlayBook is a welcome and well-executed update to a wonderful free application. BlackBerry News is available to users in the United States and Canada.