Engadget is the official application for technology review site and AOL gadget publication, Engadget.com. Engadget provides both news, reviews and interviews on a daily and sometimes hourly basis, on some of the latest technology and gadgets to have hit the market recently. It also provides an insight into rumors and corporate leaks which may point to the shape and functionality of future unannounced products.
Being a tech enthusiast myself and writing about both technology and mobile applications for a living, Engadget is one of the main sources, among others, I tend to frequent if I’m looking for breaking technology news. So, does the app put the website we all know and love into our hands? Well in order to answer that lets first look at what the app offers. Opening the app you’ll see a a list of three sections Engadget is split up into. These include: Engadget (the main site), Engadget Mobile and Engadget HD. By default the app will throw you to ‘Engadget’ but switching to another section later on is simply done via a hidden drop-down menu located at the top of the app. Here, you’ll be greeted with a list of all the current posts on the Engadget blog, spanning over 5 iPhone-sized pages. The most important or featured items are shown at the top of this list accompanied by a relating picture from that article. Swiping left or right will bring you to the next post. Found a post you think you’d like to take a closer look at? Simply tap it. Engadget lays out articles just as you’d see them in mobile safari, but this time the content is automatically optimized for iPhone.
While reading any article within the app you’ll have the choice to save it for offline reading, share it with friends on either Twitter, Facebook or via e-mail, or view comments left on the article. In the top right of each post you’ll see a yellow speech bubble, and tapping it will bring up that posts comment section. here the comments are shown and you even have options to reply, report or rate a comment either up or down, straight from within the app. That’s about it for in-article view, so lets head back to the main screen. There are 5 tabs within Engadget for iPhone, including; Latest, Topics, Videos and Galleries. The ‘Topics’ provides one-click access to all the topics Engadget covers, from the likes of Gaming, to Displays, Household and Networking. Tapping through to a topic will display all the posts within that topic with options to move to next and previous pages when appropriate.
The video tab is where Engadget for iPhone really shines though as this showcases episodes of ‘The Engadget Show,’ a new video podcast type event Engadget launched back in September last year. The show usually lasts about an hour and covers most of what Engadget has blogged about that week. Including, the latest technology news and even featuring special guests like, for example, Jon Rubinstein, CEO of Palm. The ‘Galleries’ tab on the other hand displays groups or stacks of photos taken from each article published to the blog, allowing you to see the product being reviewed. Tapping a group of photos will show you the first photo in the stack and tapping the button top right will display all the photos in that stack. My only little caveat about this is this section of the app is ad supported. While the ads are advertising Engadget based content, the ads being there stops you from viewing photos fullscreen. Also, the lack of pinch to zoom means photos appear pretty stagnant. A shame, especially given the potential of this app.
Overall, Engadget for iPhone provides the technology review and news site we all love in the palm of our hands. While the app is elegantly designed and simple in it’s approach, the lack of native iPhone feature integration like for example the ability to pinch to zoom within photo galleries and lack of landscape view throughout most of the app, results in Engadget losing just a few brownie points from me.
Our Rating: 3.5/5