You can bash Sky all you want for how they present news, but it’s hard to deny how swish they make everything look.
The broadcaster may be responsible for some pretty histrionic reporting, making human suffering sometimes seem like something out of a bad Hollywood movie, but their presentation skills are second to none.
This classiness has been brought in spades to the Sky News iPad app, which is undoubtedly one of the most exciting ways to get your news fix on the Apple device.
But it’s not just the slickness of the app that makes it stand out – this is a piece of software that really makes use of the iPad’s capabilities. In combining fine aesthetics with some great features, Sky has made the BBC News app seem like something from the dark ages.
First off, there are three different ways to catch up on world events: via a timeline, a top stories section or watch coverage live.
In the timeline, you can scroll backwards and forwards to see what’s been happening over the last 24 hours or so. The top stories section presents the user with a range of video tiles, which you can view from that page or touch through for more content.
And it’s there where the app really comes alive. Once you’ve touched through, you won’t just be presented with the video on a separate page – you’ll get a load of supplementary material.
The extra bits can range from related stories (both video and text) and analysis pieces to related graphs or maps. For instance, with the Libyan crisis coverage, you can view where Western powers are launching air strikes.
It’s so tactile too, really involving the user and providing them with a wealth of information in an easily accessible manner.
You get the feeling some real care and attention has gone into this piece of kit – something you can’t say about all developers. There’s even a pleasant tutorial to guide you through the whole thing – for those new to the iPad additions like these are invaluable.
So, even if you’re not a huge fan of how Sky presents news, just download this and marvel at what the iPad can do in this area. Other broadcasters should take note, otherwise they may get left behind.
You’ll want to get on this quick as well, as the app is free for a limited period. Let’s hope they don’t ramp up prices anytime soon.