05-16-2005, 08:29 AM
Thumbs Must Hurt
Join Date: Mar 2005
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There are a few RSS feeds that contain more content than others, in an effort to be more mobile-friendly. Yahoo News Mobile is one example of this. At the other extreme, there are those such as CBC News, which only provides headlines. Some, such as "The Register" offer a choice between headlines only or first-paragraph excerpts.
Ultimately, however, they all seem to require you to go online to get the full story.
In many cases, one intent is to keep the RSS feeds themselves relatively small, for the sake of bandwidth and device memory capacity. However, since many news sites are at least somewhat advertiser-supported, they also want to ensure that you're hitting their actual web page, since reading an RSS feed won't contribute to their hit count.
As far as "push" news capabilities, I haven't yet found anything (other than those apps like Handmark Express which do scheduled "pulls").
However, in terms of getting thinner content, I've been trying out an app called FreeNews for the past couple of days. Although you still have to connect online to download full content, the major advantage of FreeNews seems to be that rather than calling the external browser and displaying the normal web page, it pulls down a text-only version of the news article, with all extraneous HTML formatting stripped out. This not only saves bandwidth for those who might be on a more restrictive data plan, but makes the articles themselves much easier to read.
FreeNews itself seems to actually proxy everything through their own servers, which can be both good and bad.... The upside seems to be performance (both in terms of HTML-stripping as well as the caching of frequently-accessed content), but of course if their server was down you likely wouldn't be able to access any of your news content.
On another plus side, however, your RSS feed subscriptions can be managed by logging into their site from your normal browser.