6 Very Different Ways to Get the News Online

Try these tools to find out which news stories are hot right now

Ask anybody about where they get their news from, and a lot of them might answer: Facebook, Twitter, TV or the homepage of a favorite news blog. Some may even say they use a news reader app like Digg or Flipboard.

Even though it's great to find stories that your friends share on social media or be able to build your own list of news sources with a handy ​RSS app, these popular platforms don't always guarantee people the best-personalized news reading experience.

Want something new to try? The following list of online news tools can help you do everything from staying informed in the shortest amount of time possible, to keeping track of which people you know who made the news.

of 06

News in Shorts: Articles of 60 words or less

For those TL;DR moments, News in Shorts is an app you'll want to have installed on your phone if you still want to keep up with what's going on in the world. All news stories are just 60 words or less, and you can tailor your news to your interests by choosing from categories like business, sports, technology, entertainment and more.

What We Like

  • Categories like trending and top stories.

  • Useful bookmarking feature.

  • Stories sorted into genres.

What We Don't Like

  • Difficult to navigate.

  • Awkward interface.

  • No web or Amazon Fire version.

of 06

News.me: Top stories from your Facebook and Twitter networks

Social media sites like Facebook and Twitter are great for following the news, but there's a lot of useless noise that comes along with it. News.me brings you only the top stories shared by friends in your Facebook and Twitter networks, and delivers them in a convenient and easy to read newsletter format each day by email.

What We Like

  • Select favorite categories on initial launch.

  • Change font size with one tap.

  • Easy to share stories.

What We Don't Like

  • News feed doesn't align with interests.

  • Limited features.

  • User interface is not intuitive.

of 06

Circa News: Long news stories boiled down to shorter ones

Similar to News in Shorts, Circa News is a mobile app that seeks to deliver just the very important parts of stories to readers. The app uses a team of editors that takes long news stories and cuts them down to short ones with only the essential elements left in. Even for breaking news stories, Circa News delivers, so you never miss out.

What We Like

  • Simple, intuitive interface.

  • Tagging to see more of what you like.

  • Compatible with Chromecast.

What We Don't Like

  • App filled with ads.

  • Mostly only video content.

of 06

Daily by Buffer: Like Tinder, but for news stories

Tinder is an online dating app that shows you profile matches in your area and lets you swipe left to pass or swipe right to like them. Buffer's Daily app works similarly to Tinder by showing you a batch of interest news stories, which you can swipe left or right on to pass or like. Anything you swipe right on will be automatically added to your Buffer queue. 

What We Like

  • Share to your own public feed.

  • Simple card system interface.

  • Great range of content.

What We Don't Like

  • Only available for iOS.

  • Odd Tinder style like or dislike system.

of 06

Newsbeat: Short, minute-long audio clips of news stories

If you'd rather listen to the news instead of reading it, but can't stand traditional radio, then Newsbeat might be for you. This app gives you one-minute bites of news in audio format, so you can listen, and then move on to the next. You can even personalize it by choosing the topics of interest to you from all sorts of local, national and international sources.

What We Like

  • Intuitive interface.

  • Swipe right to read full story.

  • Embedded browser.

What We Don't Like

  • Difficult to customize news feed.

  • Small number of categories.

of 06

SHINE for Reddit: A Chrome extension that beautifies Reddit

What We Like

  • Well designed interface.

  • Less cluttered than Reddit site.

What We Don't Like

  • Focused on Reddit content.

  • Difficult to customize.

Reddit has looked pretty much the same for years, and it's been pretty bland. Given that it's also one of the best places to find news stories in a variety of topics, this new SHINE for Reddit Chrome browser extension can make the browsing much more visually appealing with photos, GIFs, videos and even a Pinterest-inspired layout for it all.