Readly vs Readbug vs Flipboard vs Apple News

Flipboard is available for iOS, Android, BlackBerry, Windows, Windows Phone and (since February 2015) online in your web browser. Rather than charge a subscription fee, Flipboard pays its way with ads.

Flipboard looks good (although we prefer the rival app Zite it bought last year, and whose recommendation system is now part of Flipboard), but its success largely depends on you: if you choose your interests wisely, follow good user-created Flipboard magazines and don't connect Facebook if you like lots of companies' pages then you'll get a much better experience.

The Flipboard app on iOS has just been updated to make it more social. Magazine creators can ask readers questions, comment on the stories they link to, add images or request others get involved. If you prefer reading to be a passive activity that won't be of much interest, but it's great if you want to share what you see online.

Apple News

Readly vs Readbug vs Flipboard vs Apple News

Apple News is still a largely unknown quantity

Apple News is a bit of a mystery at the moment. We know it's going to be ad-funded, we know it's going to be based around RSS news feeds, and we know that human curation is going to be a key part of it because Apple is busy hiring journalists and editors. But until it actually launches in Autumn 2015, we don't know whether it's any good.

We know some of the partners who have already signed up, a list that includes Wired, ESPN, the Guardian and the Atlantic, but it's unclear whether you'll be able to add your own feeds to the app or whether you'll be limited to the content Apple chooses for you. The demo certainly looks good, but then so did the original iPhone demo – and we know now that the phone Steve Jobs was waving about was barely functional.

News might be the death of Flipboard and the future of newspapers. Then again, it might just be another Ping. We'll let you know in the autumn.

Carrie Marshall

Writer, broadcaster, musician and kitchen gadget obsessive Carrie Marshall (Twitter) has been writing about tech since 1998, contributing sage advice and odd opinions to all kinds of magazines and websites as well as writing more than a dozen books. Her memoir, Carrie Kills A Man, is on sale now. She is the singer in Glaswegian rock band HAVR.