App Review: Flipboard for Windows 8.1

Flipboard is a news app which, according to Windows Store charts, is one of the most popular Windows apps. It’s easy to see why. Flipboard, at its core, is meant to replace the magazine. Its interface mimics flipping pages. This is certainly a nice touch; it makes sense in a way some other news apps’ interfaces don’t. Now, there are apps which support paid subscription to digital editions of print magazines; this isn’t one of them. Flipboard is a feed-fetcher that brings in the stories available on the open web.

So, when you first install Flipboard and open it, you’ll have to create a Flipboard account. Then you’ll subscribe to the sources you want to read.

Flipboard has hundreds of websites as sources in the “Discover” section of the app. Flipboard also allows you to subscribe to sections, such as “news” and “tennis” and “food”, which gather the top stories from various websites in a topic. I really like this feature; it’s the main reason I use Flipboard.

Flipboard also allows you to show your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, Flickr, etc. feeds as a flip-through interface. This works all right, but flipping is not the best interface for social media.

A really interesting feature of Flipboard, the thing that really sets it apart, is the ability to make your own “magazines” and “flip” stories into them. This allows you to save stories and categorize them for future reference. Flipboard also has a Chrome extension that allows you to save things to your magazines from your browser.

If you have Windows 8, you should have Flipboard. It’s a great, intuitive way to read the web and save it for later. But subscribe to sections, not individual sites, or social media accounts. There are better apps for those.

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