Keep Up with the News: Pulse on Android Tablets

May 21, 2011, By Christian Cawley

There is an increasing urge to stay in touch with the latest developments these days, and the World Wide Web has grown in order to feed this demand. One of the top ways of doing this is via RSS feeds.

Many websites keep an eye on their competitors using RSS feeds, and tailored news feeds can be configured using Google to give an individual the exact news that they want to read, based on pre-determined search terms.

It is an easy task to setup an iGoogle page to read any user-defined feeds, but if you’re looking for a slicker news reading experience that doesn’t rely on lists of old fashioned RSS feeds, the very cool Pulse app is perfect for Android tablets.

Using Pulse newsreader for Android

Reading the News with Pulse

Available free from the Android Market, Pulse is idea for Android tablets, although a phone version is also available.

On first launch the app explains how you can use it; it has various functions, such as importing Google Reader feeds, your Facebook newsfeed, adding the Pulse Widget and even adding custom news feeds.

This app is really easy to use, and offers several news feeds to read by default, which it does by displaying them in a stylish layout that makes good use of your display.  What is particularly good is how the app displays images where possible, offering a modern, magazine-style feeling to proceedings. Tapping a news item to read it allows you to share on Facebook or Twitter, as well as view it on the web or in reformatted mode within the app.

Adding Sources in Pulse

The best way to add a news source to this app is to scroll down to the bottom of the default news column and click the + symbol.

This will display a list of Featured sources that you can tap to add, or you can use the Browse tab to find interesting topics such as Music, Gaming and Sports. Meanwhile you can add a user-defined news feed by using the Search tab and entering the RSS feed of a page you visit often, or a keyword that the search tool can use to generate news. Note that this seems to be a limited service; entering an RSS feed works much better, so it seems that Pulse attempt to create keyword news based on popular subjects rather than your whims!

Better customization can be used by signing into Google Reader via the corresponding tab, and this will display all RSS feeds that you are subscribed to via that service.

Considerable customization is available in Pulse. By tapping the menu button you can use the Manage Sources function to configure the five pages of news feeds that are available to you, dragging feeds to change the order and tab that they appear on, or tapping the X in the corner of the feed to drop it entirely.

Further layout options can be altered via the Settings menu, allowing you to view more news items by altering the tile size, and the text size can also be adjusted.

All in all, this is a great newsreader app that no Android tablet should be without.

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