Pulse news reader gains beautiful social streams

Pulse 3.0.4 for iOS (photos teaser)

Pulse, the popular news aggregator app akin to Flipboard, was updated today with the ability to browse your Flickr, Instagram, Tumblr and YouTube streams. If you thought that getting your favorite best news content in one place was all the rage back when developer Alphonso Labs launched the app in 2010, you’ll want this update for it brings your favorite social feeds in one place, with one clean interface. I’m a big fan of Flipboard which already provides these features, but if you prefer Pulse you can now jump into the 21st century…

“Two years ago, when Pulse launched, we saw a lot of people painfully switching between different websites or apps to read their news”, reads the official blog post. “They would open up a lot of tabs in their browser or create a folder with a lot of publisher apps on their phone. Pulse set out to make lives easy by getting the best news content in one place.”

Fast-forward to today, we now see a lot of people painfully switching between social networks to get their favorite content. But hopping across social networks is so 2012, and who wants to live in the past? With the latest Pulse update (on iOS and Android) you can browse your favorite social feeds—Youtube, Tumblr, Instagram, Flickr, and Facebook—in one place, with one clean interface. Welcome to the new age.

Welcome indeed.

The redesigned experience lets you enjoy your Instagrams, Flickrs or Youtube clips without any clutter. To add your social feeds, tap the blue Add Content button at the bottom of the left navigation bar, swipe to Social or What’s New, then tap the + to add your feed to a page. When you go back to that page, log in and start browsing.

Pulse 3.0.4 for iOS (Photos teaser 002)

Pulse version 3.0.4 is still provided free of charge and supports natively all form-factor iPhone and iPad models. A version for Android is available free from Google’s Play Store.

It seems obvious now, but Pulse was born out of Stanford graduate students Ankit Gupta and Akshay Kothari’s frustration with the news reading experience on mobile devices. They wrote the program as part of a course at the Institute of Design.

Pulse 3.0.4 for iOS (iPhone screenshot 001)Pulse 3.0.4 for iOS (iPhone screenshot 002)

Their startup is now 25 people strong and all these employees work full-time on the Pulse mobile and HTML5 apps. Though Pulse initially debuted as a $5 download (later reduced to $2), it’s now free as Alphonso experiments with sponsored articles that started appearing in certain news feeds last year (these are marked with an orange megaphone icon).

You can add iDownloadBlog to your reading feed in both Pulse or Flipboard, here’s how.