More useless than a real newspaper
Only the Austin American statesman could achieve this incredible feat. It doesn’t work
Often won’t download—archives as needing download
**The comment section will not allow a second comment; just pulls up the original comment from 21 hours ago with the option to send so, I have added to my original comment & changed my rating for the Austin-American Statesman ePaper IPad app from two stars to one star, the lowest rating I can give and I will resend everything..
**Why? Tonight , for 3 edition in a row & the 4th edition out of the last 10, the edition goes straight to the blue circle and will download only the first 2 pages. (1/17/19, 1/16/19, 1/15/19 & 1/8/19). They seem perfectly fine with collecting for a service which they cannot or will not provide. Under those circumstances I cannot recommend & instead recommend against the ePaper app for any IPad user,
**Original Comment: When the IPad app works I like the results, which looks more like a newspaper than the live update of the Austin-American Statesman & other newspapers which looks like an internet info page. If I wanted an internet info page, I would not pay to download the e-paper. When the IPad app does not work, it is frustrating.
**Problem: Many times the edition will not download so you have to read straight from the cellular or WiFi. If you go somewhere where there is poor cellular & no internet then too bad. When the download button is pressed it goes straight to the blue circle with the spinning asterisk inside which normally is the ending of their download process but it will have only downloaded 2 pages. The rest will never download. The edition will go into the archived editions annotated with the “download” button but even days later will not download.
If download is selected from the drop down menu then a transparent overlay over the page occurs with the notation “preparing download” with the spinning asterisk. It never stops preparing; the edition never downloads & the IPad has to be restarted to break out of the sequence.
Over the months I have sent them many e-mails about this issue but they seldom respond & the problem never has been fixed. They seem unwilling or unable to fix this no-download problem.
I give the IPad app 2 out of 5 because the results is more like a newspaper but 1 out of 5 if you are not willing to put up with the No-download scenario. Tonight is the 2nd night in a row when the edition will not download & the 3rd time recently.
As an aside the previous owners included USA Today with the edition & the Sunday comics also appeared with that part of the Sunday edition that downloaded with the Saturday edition. The current owners do not include USA Today or the Sunday comics in the Saturday edition. I wonder if that same cost cutting mentality is linked to editions not downloading.
Regression, not progression, but at least they are finally working on it
By Austin Duck Hunter
In fairness, I now update my reviews from last June and March that appear below.
After a long 10 months the developer has finally remedied many of the issues that I noted below. I have therefore increased my star rating from 1 (you couldn’t give it a zero or a negative number that it deserved) to a 3. I only wish they had not introduced the app until it was ready for use, rather than throwing it out for consumption, frustration, and aggravation. I do not like being made to waste my time while a news publisher experiments in a world it apparently was not prepared to enter. I wonder how many subscribers they lost because of this bad business move?
My earlier reviews appear below.
This review updates the review I wrote last March that appears below. Updating is something the American Statesman and its third party vendor apparently are unwilling to do. They must not care about their readers.
For some reason, the app now randomly crashes when one attempts to enlarge a page or column in order to read it. It is of no purpose to tap on the article to read it as a single page. When viewed in that format, words continue to be broken into unreadable pieces with spacing inserted at places that require great effort to figure out what the author intended. This probably has something to do with the conversion from a column width to a page and the resulting collateral damage to the written form of communication, but one would think that a caring journalist would do everything possible to avoid damage to the innocent bystanders.
This app does not deserve one star, but giving it at least one is the only way one can write a review.
Advertisements are inserted randomly disrupting visual flow and many times causing the app to crash or just stop. (I don’t have a problem with advertising, after all, selling ads is the time-tested business model that has brought us the news of our neighbors, towns, state, nation and world. But at least take the time to make sure they don’t disrupt the visual experience, or being able to have the experience at all.)
Pages sometimes do not load. Sometimes, successive articles are no more than duplications of previous articles. Within articles, word-spacing is non-existent and two, sometimes three or four words are run together to form something that takes more time to decipher than it takes to work the crossword puzzle. Words beginning with the letter “f” begin with “>.”
>or God’s sake, if you are going to publish something, whether in print or digital format, at least have a competent editor proofread the content before you push the digital newspaper equivalent of pressing the send key on a Twitter tweet.
It was Albert Schweitzer’s view that use of increasing technology just because we can does not necessarily improve our own purpose for living; that Western civilization was decaying because we have abandoned our affirmation of life at its very ethical foundation. Contemplating this may be more than need be undertaken in a review of an app. But if you are going to force us to use new technology, at least do not thrust it upon us before the technology itself is mature enough to be used, and once it is, then take the time to master the use of it yourself. I don’t think you are so much guilty of disseminating the ofttimes flippantly called “fake news.” I do charge you with sloppy, lazy journalism.
Gov. Allan Shivers once told former American-Statesman editor, Ray Mariotti, “You’ve taken a lousy paper and ruined it.” The present Statesman’s management (and presumably the new owners now that the Statesman has been sold)have taken a lousy app (the old one) and ruined it (this updated version.)
I quit having my daily paper delivered a few months ago, because the Statesman increased its subscription cost the way recently sentenced Pharmco Bro Martin Shkrelli increased the price of his company’s drug by 5000%. Management obviously wanted to drive old, longtime paper readers away from print to the digital. I was driven. So for the last several months, I have been reading my daily paper online. I have resisted limiting my world view to what knowledge of current events comes through the poor filters of Twitter, Facebook, and late-night comedians’ monologues, alone. Austin American Statesman, you are not helping.
Twice, ie days in a row I cannot get the current edition of the paper. I can get yesterday’s news but not today’s. I sent a message previously describing this problem. No resolution!
If you are looking for a cancellation, be aware you have two strikes already.
By Disgusted in Austin
This is perhaps the worst app I use. It crashes at least once each time I read the paper, for no apparent reason. The crashes appear to be associated with zooming in on an article to read it---maybe it crashes after a certain number of times zooming in. I no longer have the endless login loop problem. Thought that was fixed, but recent reviews show some users still have that issue. Unfortunately I don't see a realistic alternative for reading a facsimile of the print version on my iPad. I have never before posted a review of an app, but this one has finally annoyed me enough to do so. The convenience of reading the paper on my iPad is almost outweighed by the inconvenience of the crashes.
So I left that review some time back. I also spoke by phone to their IT person and complained about the crashes. Apparently they don't care, since nothing has changed with the crashes. In addition, on about 1/3 of mornings today's paper doesn't load. Instead my iPad thinks for two or three times as long, and then up pops the paper I was reading most recently. I guess it's like the big banks. When you have a near monopoly, you don't have to worry about consumer desires or complaints.
Back again because the Statesman insists on putting out new versions bringing back the same old problems. My ePaper actually loaded well on my iPad and could be read without crashes for about 6 months. Then the “new” design by some “award winning newspaper designer” came out a week or 2 ago, and they have brought back slow/unending loading, random crashing, and graphics/comics that take a very long time to focus. If they are trying to save a newspaper by trying to find a format that will attract the younger smart-phone demographic, maybe they should pay more attention to a quality product and less to style. This way they are just giving us a pig in lipstick, won’t attract new subscribers but WILL run off the rest of us. And, they took away U S Today, which had been appended to the ePaper.
Trying to find a way to cancel. Seemingly cannot. After downloading the Austin paper, I can read perhaps six pages - when it defaults to
the USA Today Sports pages. Weird.
I've talked to their IT about the crashes. They always act like it's news to them. Worst app ever.
Added comment based on developer response:
Most common crash is on second page of comics with tv listings.
8/16/18 update: Was OK for awhile. Now worse than ever. Often won't load. Can't finish download. App shuts down when hitting heavy graphics, especially the comics. Have to go to website to read the paper and often that won't load either.
Why don’t you do a front page story on this atrocious app? This app crashes daily with even routine subject material...forget the comics!
Awful and seems to be getting worse!!!
By Barefoot Texan
App crashes daily. Can’t get through the entire paper any longer. While the layout could use some work to make it more user friendly that work should take a back seat to the overall stability problems. This morning I didn’t even make past 10 pages of section A
Pretty worthless to sell a ‘paper’ that can’t be read...
I have sent 3 or 4 emails about the issues I have and the answer has been the same for the past 5 months - “we know about this and are working to correct. Please clear your cache, you can also delete and reinstall the app”. I have done this so many times I lost count
If it worked this would be a great app. But it doesn’t and isn’t.
I use this app to read the paper daily. There have been zero days without crashing. Some days if I avoid certain pages I can avoid crashes. Others, like today, it crashes on 90% of the pages. I recently bought a new iPad in the hope that might improve the app experience. It made no difference. I have had an iPad since they came out and literally I don’t remember any other app crashing in all of those years. Except this one.