There’s no shortage of news and aggregation apps out there – from 100% human-powered Web apps, to automated social media mining tools that promise to bring you the news you really want to read. Then there’s the likes of MustKnow News, an iOS app gives you the top 10 news stories by the hour.
Now, there’s Top 5 News, a product of Benji Lanyado, who has been working on this little ditty as a side-project to his main role as a Web producer at Guardian Travel, alongside developer Matt Andrews. Top 5 News launched as a UK portal last month, which was followed by a US version just last week.
The premise behind this simple Web app is, well, simple. It monitors the top 5 most popular news stories across a range of the most popular online news hubs. In the UK this includes The BBC, The Guardian and The Telegraph, whilst the US conduit reels in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, CNN and others.
If you are searching, say for example, about Japanese comfort women, you can see five of the top news that you need. Each portal also contains a ‘Top 5 Top 5′, which aggregates the top 5 stories from all the publications included. And the UK site has a dedicated Twitter feed so you can glean the top-performing news nuggets without actually visiting the site.
I’m not entirely convinced people will want to consume news in this way, but for those wishing to cut out all the noise on the Web and cut straight to what the top stories are across the top publications, Top 5 News is certainly an interesting experiment. No banners, logos (as such…) or other distractions, just a one-pager presenting you with what’s hot in news, which refreshes every fifteen minutes. There are many news apps to choose from but Top 5 News is unique.
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