NYTimes' iPhone App Does the Job

Thanks to a tip from former Jup, Joe Wilcox, I am now addicted to the New York Times app for the iPhone. Nice clean interface, default tabs include Business and Opinions (wise choices), and....it comes with ads. That you can click through! Wow, this whole mobile marketing thing just might happen after all. Right now, I'm getting a Westin ad with a weak call to action, but a satisfying landing page. It takes up the same space as the tab controls, so about 1/8th of the screen.

Back to the Times app, I find it more satisfying than newspapers on Kindle. Kindle's NY Times was like the worst of both worlds: an RSS experience - that is, stripped down, lacking context and rich storytelling/interactive features - but not fresh either. On Kindle, you get the early edition of the Times, and it doesn't update during the day, even if you download it in the middle of the afternoon. That's a problem that should be fixable.

In contrast, the Times on the iPhone gives you an RSS like easy-to-read on the small screen version of the story, but supports links back to the main site, photos, etc. I thought a lead story with photo made me click one more time than necessary to get to the story's text. But overall, a really solid effort of converting a newspaper to the phone.

Oh, and it seems my Facebook iPhone app has an update already. Whew, photo support (MySpace had that day one). And it really updated, that is, it replaced the old version on my phone, as it should.

I am still amazed at free song ID via Shazam, and over the air webcasting from Pandora and AOL Radio. I thought the economics of unlimited data contracts wouldn't support radio. Maybe they still won't. But the experience over Edge is decent; it's probably just fine over 3G.

My favorite feed reader, NetNewsWire from NewsGator, is still a little wonky on the iPhone. Keep working, guys, you're almost there.