iPhone app review: Birmingham Business Journal


The first Birmingham publication to move into the exploding iPhone market is the Birmingham Business Journal. The weekly newspaper already offers weekday site updates and e-mail bulletins.

In this post, we review the publication’s free iPhone app.

Birmingham-based iPhone developers Brian Cauble and Josh Grenon served as our guest reviewers.

Birmingham Business Journal iPhone app Birmingham Business Journal iPhone app

Birmingham Business Journal iPhone app:
article list and single story

What was your overall experience?

Brian: The overall experience was mixed. It was a very simple app that essentially only showed the story. However, it had no categorization of stories, which I found to be limiting.

Josh: Clunky.

Do you get the sense that this is a custom app, or a “skinned” app for various sister outlets?

Brian: I think this is an app developed for all the Biz Journals.

Josh: This could be a skinned app, but I get the sense that it is a custom app.

As a news consumer, what did you like? What would you add?

Brian: I liked that it sized the articles to fit on my screen properly. I would definitely add categories for the news stories.

Josh: I like that I can access the Birmingham Business Journal on my iPhone, but the user experience was horrible. I would redesign this application, because I had a much better experience on the mobile version of the Web site.

As an app developer, what did you like? How would you improve it?

Brian: This app is extremely simple. It delivers the news and lets you e-mail the stories, but that is about it. I would add a better organizational structure and more options for sharing stories.

Josh: I didn’t like anything in this application. The interface was not designed very well, and my experience suffered greatly. Tip for improvement: Use the New York Times iPhone app as inspiration on how this app should be redesigned.

Since it’s a free app, would you pay money for it? How much? Why or why not?

Brian: I would not pay for this app.

Josh: I would not pay 1 cent for it. Redesign the app, and then we’ll see if I will pay for it.

• • •

Our other iPhone app reviews:
CBS 42 app, Fox 6 app and BlazeRadio app.

• • •

brian caubleBrian Cauble (@briancauble) is the co-owner of Appsolute Genius, an iPhone application development company in Birmingham. His other interests include promoting local entrepreneurship through Birmingham Entrepreneur, participating in social media and a huge attachment to college football.

Josh GrenonJosh Grenon (@joshgrenon) is a .Net developer by day and an iPhone developer by night. He started developing iPhone applications — such as Bham iCamp — in early 2009. Josh is also executive producer of Inspirageek, a casual yet informative video blog for geeks, and founder of user group Birmingham Mobile Tech.

• • •

Read more Birmingham media updates.

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