The NewsDemon Blog

Newsgroup Spotlight: Mac Newsreaders

November 20th, 2009

macnewsreaders

Apple is more popular than ever. With new software becoming available for the Mac almost every day, an unusual amount of variety is now starting to sprout. No surprise that the mac newsreader arena is one of them. Here are our top three newsreaders for Mac that stand out from the bunch.

3) Hogwasher – Made by Asar, the mac only newsreader has been around for a while. It maintains multiple server support, integrated media viewing features and complete email support. It should be able to run on Snow Leopard without issue, but we were not able to test that. The trial period is 60 days and $49.00 thereafter. Set up Instructions for Hogwasher

2) BinBot – Originally designed and created for Linux machines, this newsreader is one of the very few that actually support all three – Linux, Windows and OS X systems. Also feature rich, BinBot automates a lot of the processes involved with USENET. You have a full 30 days before committing to a $19.95 cost to buy the program.

1) Unison – The parent company, Panic, makes other programs but one of the most popular has and continues to be the Unison newsreader. One of the longest running newsreaders for Mac in the market today, Unison continues to be updated and supported for most Mac machines.  Unison definitely has the most users than any other Mac newsreader we’ve found, which makes it helpful when needing to get support especially.  If you like it after 30 days, keep it for $24.95 for each full release. Set up instructions for Unison

All three of these newsreaders are quite capable all on their own. The real difference is really how intuitive and complicated each one can be. Hogwasher and BinBot take a little bit more time to configure and get used to. Unison on the other hand, is much more straightforward and fairly simple.

It’s a good bet to just try out each to find what works best for you. With a good trial period for each one, they all allow for you to test them out thoroughly and figure out how they function. If you have an experience you’d like to share, add them here to our comments. We’d like to know what you think.

Also, if you’re using an iPhone, you do have options. NewsTap is the most popular newsreader for the iPhone and iTouch  and is routinely updated and maintained.

 

Mobile Application Usenet Newsgroup Newsreaders For iPhone, Android and Windows Mobile

April 13th, 2009

Looking to access newsgroups while on the go? Nowadays its easier than ever, especially with current gen phones.

For the ever popular Apple iPhone, NewsTap is available as a Usenet newsreader for the devices, including the iTouch. Features include:

  • It’s easy and simple to subscribe, manage and read news groups.
  • The application fully supports the portrait and landscape mode.
  • Limited support for binary groups so photos and pictures can be displayed as well. It’s possible to add photoes into the photo album.
  • Quotes are displayed in different colors. Hyperlinks can be opened in the web browser Safari.
  • Optimized article layout for the small iPhone display. The original layout is also available.
  • Navigate articles via thread tree or by flicking with one finger.
  • Filter available for read articles and quotes.
  • Build-in help, which explains all the application features.
  • Backup feature (requires a Macintosh computer and the Mac application “NewsTap Backup Tool”), which can be used to save and restore preferences and subscriptions. This feature can also be used to import export “newsrc” files so you can synchronize NewsTap with other Newsreader applications on your Mac. This feature requires a Mac, currently it doesn’t work with Windows.

It is available for $4.00 on the iPhone App Store. NewsTap is pretty easy to navigate and as noted by the list of features, has many different options to customize the iPhone newsreader to your liking. NewsTap Lite is also available for trial use.

For the Android platform, Almarsoft has released Groundhog Newsreader. Some of the features include:

  • Online/Offline modes, so you can choose to download the messages anywhere or in bulk when you have a fast connection (like WI-FI.)
  • Easy reading using colors for the different levels of quoting.
  • Screen to easily select what lines to quote when replying to someone.
  • Messages are grouped by thread using separators to clearly define thread changes and thread level indicators.
  • Starring of users and authors.
  • Banning by thread and author (don’t feed the trolls!)
  • Mail forwarding of Usenet messages.
  • Configurable text size.
  • Group search.

Although currently in beta, the Groundhog Newsreader is pretty stable on the Android system with little to no comments of any crashing (as often is the case with 3rd party applications) with its latest releases. Best of all, its Free.

For Windows Mobile, you can use Outlook or your mail client as your newsreader. However, you may want to try a 3rd party Usenet newsreader such as Qmail or Qusnetsoft NewsReaders available for the device. These programs have not been tested by us, but does seem to get good reviews, which features:

  • NNTP, RSS and RDF Transport support.
  • SSL Encryption for NNTP support.
  • NNTP Authentication support.
  • Online and Offline reading.
  • HTML and Attaches support.
  • Working with several servers.
  • Working without PC Synchronization.
  • Today Screen Plugin.
  • VGA Resolution Display support.
  • Autobackup and Autorestore.
 

Newsgroup Spotlight: Cell Phones on Usenet

February 4th, 2009

It’s undeniable that cell phones are being used less and less nowadays as a phone. Recently, research studies have suggested that cell phones are being relied upon for everything from using your email to downloading and playing favorite tunes and videos. The future of this market seems only to be increasing by the day as phone manufacturers rush to supply the latest and greatest. The iPhone, G1, Blackberry Storm and the new Palm Pre are all examples of these all-in-one devices that are quick to cater to the flood.

A great source for both fans and owners of these devices have been found on newsgroups. From development to the technology in which they’re based, many newsgroups are hosts to dedicated discussions of the different phones and platforms they’re based upon.
As an example, newsgroups such as misc.phone.mobile.iphone hosts general discussions of fans of the iPhone. Users of the recently released Google phone, the G1, have been active on alt.cellular.t-mobile – the only US Carrier suporting the phone. While patiently awaiting fans of the new Palm Pre have been getting leaked details of the new phone on alt.comp.os.palm. Other newsgroups dedicated to the development of the platforms and the phones themselves have been an invaluable resource for developers. The newsgroups have been responsible for creating and maintaining some of the core functions these phones feature.
General chatter on providers, service and technology also are prominent on Usenet. For the US, alt.cellular.attwsand alt.att have been a meeting ground regarding ATT service, while the UK community meets upon groups such as uk.telecom.mobile and tw.bbs.rec.mobilecomm.
Many other newsgroups exist on the subject as well that cater to different phones and providers alonside the other thousands of newsgroups that exist on Usenet today. Many of these newsgroups came into existence even before there products were released, as others will be created as technology and advancements are made.