Ex-Google and Bing engineers create personalized mobile newspaper for the iPad
By: Rachel McAthy
This is really a neat story. Look at You Tube Video link too...
A personalised mobile newspaper for iPad users has been launched by a team of former Google and Bing engineers.
Apollo News, the first product from Hawthorne Labs, aggregates content based on a user preferences algorithm, in a similar way to how Pandora recommends music for its users.
The app was created by Evan Reas, Shubham Mittal and Prasanna Sankaranarayanan, who together have an employer history which includes Google, Microsoft and Bing.
Co-founder Reas told Journalism.co.uk that their idea came from their own frustrations with accessing interesting content online.
"We started thinking about problems, the future, and what we thought would be cool to create," he said.
"We all are heavy consumers of online content (as many people from our generation are) and love discovering new sources of content, but find that difficult when there is so much stuff out there, especially the long tail of blogs and other sources that have yet to hit the mainstream. We want to help people discover this great content while helping to get the best unknown sources of content, discovered."
The app costs users $4.99 for unlimited usage.
"That is about the same cost as a few real newspapers that will only give you news for one day," Reas added.
The team now plans to make the app available on the iPhone as well as on the web itself, but says future developments will reach much further than the Apollo app.
"Our hopes are more for the future of the company than just this one app," Reas said. "We want to create a company with the main daily destinations (mobile and non-mobile) of news for consumers".
Even though the threesome decided to create their first app for the iPad, none of them actually owned the device when they began the project. View the video below to see how they overcame this by taking their design process to an Apple store.
[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wjIznx5jRz4&feature=player_embedded"]YouTube - Apollo App Creation at Apple Store[/ame]
These guys had balls! They didn't know Objective C and didn't even own an iPad nor could they buy one. Look at what they have created!