Curated news videos you can watch without an internet connection
Size: 51.1 MB
Developer: AntiHero, Inc.
Platform: iPhone & iPad
Following in the footsteps of last year’s smash video curation app Hyper, this sister app provides the same services for news content. For those unfamiliar with Hyper, that means hand-picked videos, automatically downloaded to your device when connected to Wi-Fi, so you can watch them later even without access to the internet. If you tend to get poor reception while out and about, or don’t want to waste your mobile data limit, this app’s got you covered. It’s pretty useful for flights, too, or really any time you might be bored and internet-less.
The videos themselves are consistently pretty good, coming from a range of sources from National Geographic to .Mic to Mashable, and everything in between. It covers both serious and frivolous stories, keeping you up to date on all sorts of funny, interesting and heartwarming stories as well as the real news. The videos feel like the kind of thing you might scroll past on your Facebook news feed, but the quality threshold is much higher thanks to the app’s human curation. All the videos are captioned, so you can watch them with or without headphones, and the editing is tight and to-the-point. The clips tend to last somewhere between one and two minutes, packing a lot of information into an easily digestible package. Overall, watching these things is great for killing time without feeling like you’re wasting time. It would have been nice to see a few customization options though, to toggle different types of news or express a preference for certain content providers.
Videos are presented in bite-size stacks of five, which are easy to get though, and the clips auto-delete when you finish watching each stack to make room for the next batch of content. Oh, and you can choose your own limit for how much space the app takes up. Though the quality of the videos is pretty decent, they only take up a very reasonable 10MB each – meaning that if you dedicate the maximum 0.5GB of storage space to the app, it can retain up to 50 videos at once. That’s around an hour of content – more than enough for most commutes! The app looks great, with a charming presentational style, nice color scheme, and slick parallax scrolling effects as you move between video clips. It’s a shame there’s no support for landscape orientation, as most of the videos are in landscape format – that or square, which suits the layout of the app a bit better.
Though it automatically updates in the background, if you don’t open the app for a few days you may find the videos aren’t up to date when you next use it, which is mildly annoying for an app centered around news. We’re happy to report that the background activity doesn’t use an excessive amount of battery. It doesn’t feel as full-featured as the original Hyper app – there’s no way to save videos to a playlist, for example – but given the highly topical nature of the content, there’s not much point in saving. If you find something particular interesting or amusing, you can tell the app you like it, or share to the usual places.
As a free app, with no adverts and no in-app purchases, we’d say it’s definitely worth downloading Hyper News. If you get the bus or the tube a lot, it’s a great way to pass the time – and even if you don’t commute to work, it’ll ensure that you’ll always have something to help you pass the time if you get stuck somewhere with no internet and nothing to do.