iPad App Turns Web into Social Magazine...When it Works

Found an exciting new app that launched last night. Flipbook (www.flipbook.com) takes the social media you subscribe to, and takes the content your friends are sharing, and presents it in a gorgeous magazine-style layout. It’s designed to look like a print magazine, which certainly fits my design sensibilities. I mean, I think I’m actually allergic to Facebook’s layout, and I use several different apps to manage my Twitter accounts, because both sites are less than visually appealing. And even better-it’s FREE!

Only one problem…it doesn’t work yet.

I hastily downloaded the app last night eager to play with it, and could not login to either Facebook or Twitter. It had several feeds already preloaded, but the core functionality-the reason why I’d even bothered to download it-is a no go. According to their support forum, they were a little overwhelmed by the interest in their app, and are working to improve the infrastructure so that everyone can get in. I tried again this morning, and still-no go.

I can’t help but think that their moment is passing them by. First impressions are everything, and the nature of the iOS app store means that if the app you just downloaded doesn’t work, there’s another one that will. It’s the reason Apple dropped rating apps when you delete the app. It’s the reason why I’ve tried out sixteen different Twitter apps looking for the perfect app. Eventually, if this doesn’t get fixed, it’ll get shifted to the last page on my iPad and forgotten about, and then deleted one day when I’m cleaning house, and all the potential would have been for naught.

I’ll be keeping an eye on Flipbook, and when it gets its ducks in a row, I’ll be back to write a proper review. But for now, I can’t recommend it.

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