iPad rhymes with ‘ad’; Droid ‘app’ rhymes with ‘usability gap’

An AP story in Editor & Publisher says advertising in newspapers’ iPad apps is doing better for publishers than website ads.

Does that also extend to iPhone and Android phone app ads?

After a month with a Droid phone I’m underwhelmed by the newspaper apps I’ve tried. I’m more impressed with the mobile versions of some Web pages, including the NYTimes.com and WordPress.

I don’t have an iPad yet, and hope its app designers aren’t building in the same annoyances:

Biggest flaw in the specialized apps:
Providing no “cut and paste” to allow smartphone-based bloggers (or other readers) to quote selectively from a story. All browsers let you copy and paste. Why don’t apps? If this is a content copy-protection scheme, I’m against it. “Freedom to quote and share” should be written into the Constitution of Apps.

Second most annoying app limitation: Providing fewer ways to enlarge text and graphics than the Web browsers do.

Third: Not using the Droid’s “landscape” layout for larger-font column views, graphic zoom, etc.

Back to advertising: By far the most annoying thing about the Times app for Droid is that it repeats the same ad on all pages and, in this early version, the ad is for something that I WANT, but know I can’t buy — home delivery of the Times, which is not available in my southwest Virginia mountain-valley neighborhood. The irony has stopped being funny.

Related things I’ve read, Tweeted about, bookmarked with Delicious or posted to some other blog in recent weeks, but neglected to mention here:

mild-mannered reporter who fell deeper into computers and the Web during three trips through graduate school in the 1980s and 1990s, then began teaching journalism, media studies and Web production, most recently as a faculty member at Radford University.

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Posted in Digital Culture, Newspapers, Tablets & eBook Readers, Television, WebDesign

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