Windows 8 – App Highlight: USA Today

A little earlier I took a look at the new “Chicago Tribune” app and I made it fairly clear that it was exactly what I felt a news app in Metro should be – it stuck to the Metro styling quite well, it wasn’t too cluttered, and it was easy to use.

Now let’s take a look at “USA Today”. Do I feel the same? Not quite.


Right away it just felt a little more crowded in design when compared to the “Chicago Tribune”. Sure they weren’t THAT much different, but honestly of the two I really do prefer the Chicago Tribune’s format (I enjoy the information from the CT more too, but that’s neither here nor there).

Really the intro page wasn’t much of a problem, as they weren’t that different, but what about when you open up an article?


I was presented with this big, long image I had to scroll away from just to get to the relevant reading content, something that wasn’t a huge deal but it was a minor annoyance. Next, the “Chicago Tribune” was just plain easy to navigate, especially thanks to the upper left hand-hand corner’s back button. In this app you right click to reveal a back button and other navigation tools.

Is this that hard or a major deal breaker? No, not exactly, but again it takes away from the beautiful, simple styling experience that makes my laptop feel less like an old-school PC and more like something new and fresh.

While this isn’t a bad app at all, it is my hope that more developers take a simple approach where few clicks are needed and secret buttons aren’t hiding at every corner. That’s just me. What do you think? If you have Windows 8 Consumer Preview, try out both news apps and let us know which style you actually prefer.

Am I being unreasonable to want the most simple experience I can out of these apps or to have to scroll as little possible? Maybe I’m just spoiled by the many apps that I feel have ‘gotten it right’.

So, if you love USA Today and the information they put out, should you still use this app despite the fact it maybe isn’t as well laid out? Of course, it isn’t that bad, I just prefer the way other news apps (like Chicago Tribune) have their layouts instead.

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