NewsTap Lite (Usenet Newsreader)

Category: 

Description of App: 

NewsTap Lite is a Usenet Newsreader for the iPhone and the iPod Touch.

"NewsTap Lite" is the free version of the "NewsTap" application. "NewsTap Lite" is a fully functional Usenet Newsreader, but it does not support all features of the "NewsTap" application. Please check out the full version of "NewsTap" in the AppStore. The full version has many more features: sort articles and threads by date, subscribe to any number of groups, more filter options, search for articles in groups, search words and phrases within articles, on the Mac you can export/import subscriptions and backup your preferences and more.

Features of NewsTap Lite:

  • Optimized for offline usage, so you can read and write news articles without an internet connection. With a simple tap of your finger, the app will download all the new articles and send your own ones to the news groups in one short transaction. The internet connection is only needed for a very short time.
  • The application fully supports the portrait and landscape mode.
  • Limited support for binary groups so photos and pictures can be displayed as well. It's possible to add photos into the photo album of the iPod or iPhone.
  • Filters (also known as "Killfile") available. Filters can automatically mark articles as read or mark them with a certain color.
  • Hyperlinks are automatically detected and can be opened in the web browser Safari.
  • Optimized article layout for the small iPhone display. The original article layout is also available.
  • Threads can be grouped into "folders".
  • Navigate within the articles from within the thread view or simply by flipping to the next/previous article with your finger.
  • It's possible to hide articles that are already read and to hide quotes.
  • Post new articles or send followups.
  • Build-in help, which explains all the application features.

Version: 

2.1.7

Free or Paid: 

Free

Accessibility Comments: 

This app is totally accessible. Buttons are clearly labelled, and it is easy to navigate and use.

The only real issue is that when browsing the groups list, VoiceOver does not state when a group has been selected and added to your subscribed list. You also need to double tap twice on a group for it to be selected. It is marked visually as selected, but this is not confirmed by VoiceOver. I also had the app crash a few times whilst browsing the group list. I suspect that this was a combiation of a group list that contained over one hundred thousand groups and running VoiceOver. Probably ate too many system resources.

Once you have added a group, it is as easy to browse and read as the native email client on the iPhone.

I have only used this app with text newsgroups, so do not know how accessible it is with binary newsgroups.

VoiceOver Performance: 

VoiceOver reads all page elements.

Button Labeling: 

All buttons are clearly labeled.

Usability: 

The app is fully accessible with VoiceOver and is easy to navigate and use.

Other Comments: 

This app has some strong limitations, most notably you can only add one group and use one news server. However, there is a paid version available.