Taptu releases new search apps for Android, iOS

MyTaptu pulls in and filters all kinds of RSS feeds, with a specific focus on finding mobile sites or converting full-size sites for view on a mobile device's screen.

Taptu started off as a mobile search solution aimed at helping users filter appropriate content for small-screened devices. It first appeared several years ago as a simple search portal on Web-capable phones, and then as an app for the iOS just last year. The folks over at Taptu have always had touch screens in mind while developing the interface for their apps. Today, they aim to make that even more apparent with My Taptu, an entertainment-centric app updated for both Android and iOS devices.

My Taptu for Android
My Taptu for Android. Taptu

The main goal of My Taptu is to provide users with entertainment on-the-go while filtering out content that is not optimized for a mobile device. It accomplishes this by pulling in specific RSS feeds that are made for small screens, but if you search for something that doesn't have a mobile-optimized feed, the app will actually take full-size pages and compress them into a smaller format. The app is also designed to help you avoid information overload by letting you pick and choose exactly what info you want to pull in.

When you first launch My Taptu, you're greeted with a single screen that has a variety of prepopulated streams, such as "Food & Drink" and "Tech & Gadgets." (There's also a MyTaptu section, which provides handy tips for using the app--this is a good place to start.) Under each heading is a row of cards displaying a condensed bit of information--an article headline and photo, for example. You can swipe up and down to scroll through rows, or left and right to scroll through cards. If you want to edit a row, there's an "Options" button that lets you delete, move, share, or update it. (Shaking your device will also update cards.)

Adding a new topic is as simple as tapping the plus symbol at the top of the screen. This takes you to the StreamStore where you can choose from a variety of popular feeds or search for a specific one via the search box at the top of the screen. The feeds come in two varieties: single, which pulls from a specific site (such as CNET), and mixed, which brings in content from a variety of sites under a particular topic (such as politics). Currently, the mixed streams are populated only by Taptu, but the service plans to add a feature where users can make their own mixes, kind of like a playlist for content. You will then be able to share these lists with other users as well.

Once you click on a card, the amount of info provided depends on the feed. Some have just a headline while others provide a photo and blurb as well. Every page has a link back to the Web site that allows you to read the full story. You can also flip through the cards from this page, as well as bookmark and share articles via Facebook, Twitter, and more. It's also worth mentioning that the cards are all automatically cached so that you can still access some content while offline.

My Taptu is currently available in iTunes and the Marketplace and is totally free. As of press time, it's not even ad-supported, so now is the perfect time to check it out.

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