TechCrunch Offline Reader - In the 21st century it’s all about instant gratification. So much in fact, that we can’t live without our news, books, game stats, and product reviews at the touch of a button. TechCrunch adds to the instantaneous madness with up-to-the-second tech news. Maplewood Associates wants to provide instant access to it all with their TechCrunch Offline Reader.
TechCrunch is a blog that profiles and reviews new products and companies. TechCrunch Offline Reader integrates all of the most popular TechCrunch blogs like TechCrunch, MobileCrunch, CrunchGear, TechCrunch IT, Gilmore Gang, & more. Not only may you read all of the blogs but it allows you to post and read comments too.
Using the TechCrunch Offline Reader isn’t as intuitive as some news readers. You have to play around with it for a bit to get going. The app starts with only the TechCrunch icon on the shelf. In order to see the other blogs in the network appear on the shelf go to the settings where you can turn on any of the 9 blogs available.
The TechCrunch Offline Reader settings also has options to choose storage time, download range and whether or not you want to see images. If you tap blogs, the ones you chose will now appear on the shelf. If there have been new posts since you last signed on there will be a small red circle with the number of new posts next to that blog. If you tap the blog list option it simply changes your view to list form. You’ll also see the same red circle if there have been any updates to the blog since you last read it.
From a visual perspective the user interface of TechCrunch Offline Reader is excellent. The colors are bright and vibrant. It isn’t cluttered with tons of unnecessary buttons. The interface has a very smooth modern feel to it. Even the 3D book shelf is well done with noticeable attention paid to detail. Each blog that appears on the TechCrunch Offline Reader not only has its traditional logo but if it’s an international blog it also has the country flag placed at the bottom. While there was obviously lots of attention given to the visual appearance of the app unfortunately there doesn’t seem to be the same amount of attention given to its technical aspects.
TechCrunch Offline Reader is extremely temperamental and buggy. It automatically shut itself down about eight times when I conducted this review. Even though TechCrunch Offline Reader bills itself as the offline reader it connects to the web often enough that it seems like you need a constant connection to the web. Updates are pretty sluggish too and even doing this on a Wi-Fi connection can seem cumbersome.
If you’re a TechCrunch lover you may want to stick to checking out the site via Safari on your handset or the desktop version by computer until they figure out the technical specs on this one. At least the TechCrunch Offline Reader is free.