‘Wow – this is pretty.’
This is probably the most common reaction to Flipbord and was also the first thing that came to my mind after installing it on my iPad.
Very similar to an RSS reader, Flipboard collects news and photo websites into channels and displays them in a very pretty, newspaper like look and feel. Once you tab on an article you gat an extract (how long the extract is depends on the source site) and if you want to continue reading further, the source site is loaded via Safari without leaving the Flipboard app.
There is a large collection of channels available. In addition to the normal channels, you can also integrate Flipboard with your Facebook and your Twitter account. In my experience the Twitter feed works fine but the Facebook stream is a bit buggy and seems to only display some of my Facebook news feed.
What I like about the Twitter feed is that you get the tweeds in the same newspaper like layout than the other channels. If pictures are included you can usually already see them on the page without needing to click into the tweed. This looks very nice.
When Flipboard came out a couple of months ago, it was so popular that I needed to wait for a couple of days for an invite, until I could add Twitter and Facebook.
A lot of reviewers and bloggers back then assumed that once the novelty of the pretty presentation had worn off, they wouldn’t use Flipboard anymore.
I don’t know about the general usage, but I keep returning to Flipboard every couple of days. I still enjoy it and I still read and discover things I wouldn’t have noticed otherwise.
The app is not super stable and crashes every now and then but it is not that bad.
When I wrote this post, I was looking at Flipboard version 1.0.2 for iPad. Requires iOS 3.2 or later and an iPad. Available for free in the AppStore.