Book N Tech

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Windows 8 App review: My History Digest


     The My History Digest is a magazine style app that currently showcases some premium looking articles that are pretty in depth into history. I really like the layout of the application and think other magazines or news websites like, The Verge, Engadget, and Better Homes and Garden should really follow the History Digest route. There are two other apps that follow a real magazine layout like this are the Fine Home building and the Telegraph which I both do not use (yet). The layout has a consistency with the horizontal scrolling of Windows 8 that shows itself in the start screen and the Windows Store. The My History Digest is an excellent looking app that is designed nicely but the content situation is very bad with only 3 articles. Still there is so much information there it might be enough to satisfy your history buff self. 


     The one good thing about the My History Digest is the premium app feel. It loads first time in around 3 seconds which is faster than Slap Dash Podcast and opens up to the screenshot seen above. Surprisingly for a free app that is a magazine it has very little lag when going between articles. Sadly there has been a lot of reading apps in the Windows Store (You version Bible, Bible Pronto, Free Books) that have some lag between turning pages and the Free Books app has horrible formatting. The lag is only when you turn pages in an article which is very annoying. Instead of the Wikipedia approach they took the Free books approach that is these little side buttons you press that we saw in the original Kindle app. Still they are a lot more responsive than the ones found in the You version Bible app. You can see the design and effort that was put into this app that really makes it shine far above many apps. There maybe only 3 articles but remember this is not a big company behind this project like the History channel that can fund it and how many writers work for no pay. Remember that this project looks like a group of developers, graphic designers, and History guru's converged and decided to make a Windows 8 app.


      This app is very eye catching and even with only 3 articles they are jam packed with a lot of information and is very well displayed. My only two quirks are the annoying side bars which may be more responsive than others that I have seen. Also it is short on content which I think since the articles are probably 3,000 + words are being hammered out and lay in preparation for Windows 8 as we speak.

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