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‘Inside’ App Cuts News Down to 300-Character Bites

Inside.comBrevity, speed and top-quality curation are what the founders of Inside.com hope will be the winning selling points of the latest news aggregation app. The app’s curators will deliver 1,000 stories a day, chopped neatly into 300-character news bites.

The stories are really quick summaries of another outlet’s reporting. Users can click through to the full story, or simply scroll through the hundreds of summaries, scanning the top headlines. The summaries often use abbreviations and other grammatical shortcuts to keep within the 300-character parameters, making for maybe not the prettiest prose but it gets the job done.

The breaking news app, which launched this week, was founded by Internet entrepreneur Jason Calacanis who snagged Gabriel Snyder (formerly of The Wire, Gawker and Newsweek) as content chief. They described the new app as “sort of like Pandora for news,” in a blog post announcing its launch where they promised to do the “best curation in the world.”

We take our responsibility for selecting stories and sources extremely seriously, and we hope you challenge us and let us know how we are doing often.

Users can access news via a My Feed tab, Top News, or All Updates. Personalize “My Feed” by adding preferred topics and sources. Unfortunately, there’s no search function for topics yet — and there are more than 2,000 such suggestions to scroll through. But Inside promises search is coming. Give a thumbs-up for a post you like, a thumbs-down for those you don’t, a la Pandora, Zite, etc., and the app will begin to tailor your news feed toward your interests.

Inside, of course, has plenty of competition in terms of news aggregation apps, and its model is quite similar to places like Circa, and even the new Yahoo app, that summarize the day’s top stories into shorter, mobile-friendly reading snippets.

Inside is available on iOS, Blackberry and via your mobile web browser. An Android version is promised to arrive soon.

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