Monday, October 15, 2012

Circa is the "news, reimagined" as a crashing app

The WSJ's AllThingsD gave a new news start up a fair amount of press coverage today for a news app start-up called Circa. They apparently hadn't tested the app themselves.

Circa News is an iPhone app that claims is "news, reimagined". Well, if the future of news is a buggy app that crashes, then the future be damned.

Try as I might, I could not get past the app's start up propaganda. Maybe signing up for the service might help, but the app allows one to proceed with signing up, and I certainly wasn't going to sign up before taking the app for a spin.

The apps says that instead of articles, Circa will be presented the news as a collection of facts, stats, quotes, pictures and the like. They call it "facts, without the fluff." I would call them details, but hey that's just me.

The editorial team listed on the Circa website, when investigated, appears to not really be employed by Circa – or if they are, they are keeping it secret.

But investigation is not what Circa is supposed to be about, it's about aggregation. Since the app doesn't currently work, or at least it didn't for me, despite several reinstalls (see the video for the nice crash at the end), it is hard for me to tell whether they are any good at it.

What Circa does appear good at is getting attention and investors (kind of like OnSwipe). We'll have to wait until the app update to see if they can make it work.