The Circa iPhone app: news exclusively for mobile

Circa’s concept is straightforward. It’s an iPhone-only app, which means it doesn’t provide an iPad variant. Circa gives, you content material in the most digestible of methods, for human beings at the circulate, eager to quick drill down to the essence of news. Full prevent. No animation, no frills, however a smart sequential creation.

Right here is an instance from this weekend’s stream: Google’s assertion that, in order to avoid fines in Germany, its new carrier will only index sources that have decided to explicitly decide in to being proven in on its us of a news website online. Right here is the way it looks on Circa:

Scroll #1 : the nutshell

Scroll #2 & three : a quick development and principal quotes.

Scroll four & five, the stop of the improvement and associated stories.

Now, faucet the “i†icon to get supply facts (in green):

Of course, assets â€â€ “Citations†in Circa’s parlance â€â€ are clickable and send the reader to the unique article displayed through a browser embedded inside the application (an internet-view). In doing so, Circa’s editors are able to keep the tale within the maximum compact format possible. In place of the classical tale creation taught at journalism schools that outcomes in limitless scrolling, Circa’s portions require no more than six or seven screens.

In last week’s presentation in Paris at the global Editors community convention, David Cohn, co-founder and editor-in-chief of Circa, supplied an assessment among an AP tale, regarded traditionally (left) and thru Circa’s lenses (proper, click to extend) :
“At Circa, we atomise, not summariseâ€, says Cohn. “Atomisation is when a story gets broken into its middle elements: statistics, stats, fees, media [images, maps, etc.]â€. Quite green certainly. If the reader desires to check the foundation of a piece of facts, s/he’ll unfold the resources’ deep links. Because, of course, Circa’s is an aggregator in its purest form: No unique reporting in any way, just smart repackaging.

Once I challenged David Cohn about this very factor, he countered that Circa’s stories constantly have a couple of assets and that he and his staff added “a high touch of editorial at every step of the processâ€, which includes “critical [web based] fact-checkingâ€. He endured: “in many methods we’re on the same stage as other information companiesâ€. He supposed relying on 1/3 birthday party sources or press releases from numerous entities… it truly is not precisely a consolation to me… in some unspecified time in the future, the aggregation ecosystem may really run out of unique information to feed â€â€ or prey â€â€ on.

With its workforce of 14 â€â€ including five human beings at the West coast, four on the East coast, one in Beirut and every other in Beijing â€â€ Circa produces 40 to 60 information testimonies each day and, extra importantly, 70 to ninety updates. Due to the fact, aside of its truncating obsession, Circa’s maximum favored feature is the way it follows a tale. ‘Conventional media constantly sense the want to recollect all the background of a given tale’, adds David Cohn. ‘At Circa, when a reader wants to observe a story he could be served with update notifications each time he reconnects to the app. See this abstract from David’s presentation:

Adequate, however what approximately the sales side? Circa changed into released final October and, as expected, has no plan to yield an unmarried penny earlier than subsequent 12 months. For now, the founders are building their target audience base as fast as they can. After the iPhone app, an Android version is scheduled for the autumn, as well as a primary redecorate to in addition simplify its user interface. After that, Circa’s team sees several possibilities. The most obvious is advertising, although David Cohn acknowledges that a negative implementation should unexpectedly kill the app. A flurry of banners, or intrusive formats inclusive of interstitials could irremediably sully the neat consumer revel in. (I’m nonetheless astonished to peer how sluggish traditional media are to go away these old codecs in the back of whilst native internet tasks abandon exhausted advertising equipment plenty more quickly…) Circa will rather rely on local advertisements (see a previous Monday word on the issue) that mix inside the float of memories, like in Forbes or Atlantic Media’s business website Quartz.

Some other herbal way to monetise Circa could be a business-to-business iteration of the app. Many businesses are probably inclined to help a lightweight utility specializing in their sector, with features encouraging adoption and stickiness inside large corporate staffs My Latest News.

What approximately a paid-for app? After all, Circa will be near 1m customers via yr-stop. “We would cross for an In-App buy instead, perhaps for area of interest segmentsâ€, says David Cohn. The financial region looks like a herbal candidate. Cohn also notes, in passing, that the rigorous formatting of memories should lead to a well-structured corpus of information, ideally fitted for all sorts of data-mining in the future.

Circa is in lots of approaches a current product. First, it well addresses the eye span challenge. Recollect: it’s 9 seconds for a goldfish, eight seconds for a human in 2012 â€â€ v 12 seconds in 2000 – and permit’s now not forget about that, according to Statistic brain, 17% of internet pages are considered for less than four seconds. Significantly, Circa found methods to save our valuable time. 2d, its content is extra than impartial, it’s sanitised, deodorised. It is a perfect in shape for a technology of readers for whom facts are free and plentiful, evaluations are suspect and lengthy-shape memories a relic of the past…




Student. Award-winning communicator. Subtly charming coffeeaholic. Organizer. Gamer. A real dynamo when it comes to managing jack-in-the-boxes for fun and profit. Spent the 80's donating shaving cream in Libya. Spent 2001-2004 lecturing about Roombas in Jacksonville, FL. Garnered an industry award while getting my feet wet with sheep in the government sector. My current pet project is working on Slinkies in Orlando, FL. Spent 2002-2009 developing strategies for crayon art for the underprivileged.