Twistsoft has just released an updated version RSS reader for the Blackberry called â€œNewflashâ€. Newsflash for Blackberry allows users to read RSS articles on their Blackberry device. RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication, it allows users to subscribe and download articles from multiple sites simultaneously in text-format only so it is ideal for Blackberry users with limited bandwidth. We take a look at Newsflash, read below to see what we have to sayâ€¦
There are two versions of Newsflash, a Standard and Professional version both available. The titles are a bit misleading because there are no extra features in the Professional version, just that the Professional version is for BES and Nextel/Telus users and Standard version for WAP users. Over-The-Air installation is not available so you will need to use Application Loader to install the program on your handheld. We installed the Professional version and had no issue connecting and downloading the articles.
Running Newsflash we notice that the program is a general MIDP port, which means it doesnâ€™t utilize Blackberry specific features. Thus the â€œEnterâ€ key is not mapped for selection so all navigation is done through the thumb-wheel. This is actual very common with companies that develop for other java mobile phones, but it definitely should be change.
Reading your feeds is very simple and well thought out. Newsflash separates feeds into five different categories, Business, Entertainment, Sports, Top Stories, and Others. It would have been nice to able to add your own category especially if you subscribe to many feeds. If you subscribe to many feeds you may find your Othersâ€™ category to become quite full.
Subscribing to additional feeds is fairly simple; enter the feed URL, name and choose the category. Twistsoft does not specify which standards of RSS it supports but the feeds for BBCool, Engadget, and Gizmodo worked like a charm. Unlike Newsclip another RSS reader, Newsflash does not come with a list of feeds to automatically subscribe from so you will need to enter the URL manually.
A great feature is the ability to directly visit the article link with your Blackberry browser. Many websites are now publishing the first paragraph only. The reason is to not lose out on any web advertisement dollars. So the ability to visit the article with your Blackberry is a must now.
The best part of the program is that it is very affordable, only $4.00 at NeonToad.com. It works very well but thereâ€™s a few things that the developers need to fix, mainly the ability to add categories and mapping the â€˜enterâ€™ key for selection.