Slidejoy, a startup that rewards users for putting news and advertising on their Android lockscreens, has unveiled a more comprehensive newsreading experience.
Co-founder Sanghoon Kwak led the development of the new Trends feature, and he said that previously, if you were reading news on Slidejoy, you saw one article at a time, and they came from about a dozen publishers. Slidejoy Trends, on the other hand, pulls stories from more than 500 sites, and it allows you to see a number of stories in a given category. (Slidejoy doesn’t have direct relationships with all of those publishers — ultimately, it’s just pointing you to someone else’s web page.)
Put another way, the startup is getting closer to becoming a full-fledged news app. It allows you to browse the top news in categories like Tech and Business — the rankings are based on things like the publication time of the news and the interest shown by other readers. Users can also choose to follow stories from specific publishers.
What Slidejoy isn’t doing is personalizing the stories you see, so you’re only presented with the ones that the app thinks you’ll like.
“A lot of the news apps … focus too much on personalization,” Kwak said. “Even before you see a news item, they want to know about what you like, what topics you want to follow. I think that inherently limits the scope of the news you get.”
Co-founder and CEO Robert Seo added that the company’s long-term goal is to become “the gateway to your phone.”
“We just wanted to provide an easy way to provide users with access to all those different features,” he said. “Improving the news feature is just one aspect of that.”