How Samsung forced INQ out of handsets and into apps

"We've still got a few more elements that we can roll out too. Music is another interesting area for us, as it contains so many different genres. As a result, we've gone to some smart people from universities for different elements of product and added a huge swathe of changes [since the start] for which we're now figuring out patents."

Davies also dismissed the idea that launching without the full range of features was detrimental. He's excited about the beta tag, saying that it's resulted in some great feedback from users that has built engagement and raised mistakes in a constructive way.

There's no doubt that INQ's new approach is refreshing - even the office layout has changed since the days of being a hardware manufacturer, making everything more open plan to unify the teams.

But equally, it's a company taking a huge risk by moving into apps that focus on the user's interest, trying to work out you want to read before you think of it, or giving access to social networks when you're not even looking.

The current apps need a lot of work to take on the might of Flipboard or even Facebook Home - Johnstone might claim that INQ isn't creating something that rivals these names, as its apps are more about discovery, but there's no doubt in the eyes of the user there are similarities.

But it's great to see a company in the UK trying to make waves in a new area of technology - if it can truly create a twice daily magazine that gives you content that you would never have found otherwise would be awesome, and would blow the likes of HTC's BlinkFeed and Flipboard out of the water.

And Johnstone isn't ruling out a return to hardware in the future either, although probably not in the same guise as before:

"We won't do the hardware ourselves, but it's not impossible that you'll see the INQ brand out there one day, maybe as software on someone else's hardware."

INQ tried to swim against the tide and bring the cool apps to the front and centre of phones for a low cost. It would be great if that ethos didn't die because of a congested smartphone market.

Gareth Beavis
Formerly Global Editor in Chief

Gareth has been part of the consumer technology world in a career spanning three decades. He started life as a staff writer on the fledgling TechRadar, and has grown with the site (primarily as phones, tablets and wearables editor) until becoming Global Editor in Chief in 2018. Gareth has written over 4,000 articles for TechRadar, has contributed expert insight to a number of other publications, chaired panels on zeitgeist technologies, presented at the Gadget Show Live as well as representing the brand on TV and radio for multiple channels including Sky, BBC, ITV and Al-Jazeera. Passionate about fitness, he can bore anyone rigid about stress management, sleep tracking, heart rate variance as well as bemoaning something about the latest iPhone, Galaxy or OLED TV.