Friday, February 27, 2009 - CBS News To Go, & CNET!

The "news on demand" landscape on the iPhone is changing daily. The latest entrant is, an application that streams video and audio to your iPhone, think of as a refined version of Ustream exclusively for CBS content. The application provides access to a large segment of CBS programming, including the CBS network, the CW, Showtime, CBS Sports mobile, ET, CBS radio, The Insider, CNET and CBS News.
For this blog post I will zero in on CBS News and CNET content. First off, the UI is easily browsable with the ability to create your own feed. This is easily accomplished by tagging the content you are interested in, for instance CNET Apple Byte, CBS News Headlines Now & Letterman's top 10, once tagged the application will refresh the content under "My Feed", giving one button access to the content that interests you. Navigation is intuitive, making use of a back button and application wide search.
Stepping back, CBS News content is broken down into the following subcategories: Early Show, Headlines Now, Katie Goes Mobile and Politics on Mobile, most of the clips are 1 to 3 minutes in length. The clips are sorted with the newest content on top, scroll to browse.
It is good to see CBS leveraging the CNET acquisition, CNET programming is front and center with the following categories: Apple Byte, CES, CNET Live, CNET Top 5, Car Tech, Daily Debrief, Download First Look, First Look, Holiday, Insider Secrets, Loaded, Mailbag, Planet CNET, Prizefight, Product Spotlight, Quick Tips and The Buzz Report. I must say, is easier to navigate then the CNET website is to access their broad array of content.
Content is plentiful, so how well does the application work? Initial testing, via wifi, steaming is great with no stuttering or skipping, buffering is almost non existent and the picture looks good on the iPhone screen. I plan to test today via 3G. Initially the application is fairly stable, with one crash during ~2 hours of heavy usage.
Conclusion, I look forward to exploring this application over time specifically focusing on the timeliness of the news. My initial impression is positive, having quick access to CNET content is a plus.

No comments: