Initially released only for countries within the UK, the BBC’s official news client for Android is now available worldwide. BBC News allows you to read top stories from categories and regions of your choice, watch and listen to frequently updated world news summaries, provides access to BBC’s live audio streaming news service and can be set to automatically download news updates after regular, user-defined intervals. The client, with its simple yet efficient interface, excels as a news reader. However, its media (audio and video) content leaves slight room for improvement. Keeping in mind the time that certain developers take to lift region restrictions from their apps, it is nonetheless heartening to see that BBC News has broken the shackles relatively soon.
As with so many other country/region-restricted apps, the official BBC Android client was initially available in the United Kingdom only, leaving users based outside of said region waiting in anticipation. Being a regular follower of the news network, I, of all people, was desperate to get my hands on the app, and finally, my wish has been granted. Although you may have a good idea about the UI of the app, but we would still like to go through it for our readers’ convenience. The user interface is efficient, easy on the eyes and a lot less cluttered than that of other official news network clients for Android. You can choose the news categories/regions that appear on the app’s home screen either by selecting EDIT from the home screen’s taskbar or scrolling down to the bottom of the news feed and tapping EDIT TOPICS. The app allows you to increase or decrease the font size within articles to one that suits your eyes. Tap anywhere within an article to alter its font size or share it over the web. While reading an article from a particular category, you can switch to other articles in the same category simply by swiping left or right across the screen.
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The client may be an excellent news reader, but you’ll find it to be not-so-feature-rich when it comes to media (photos and audio/video streaming). For instance, the World News Bulletin and Live BBC World Service audio streams do not continue streaming in the background (as they ideally should) upon minimizing the app or even returning to the app’s home screen.
You can view the app’s official video commercial below to see what it has in store for you.