Breaking News is a very loose term these days. According to CNN and other mainstream news networks, placing “BREAKING NEWS” in the lower third seems to be more of a cheap marketing tactic than anything. However, there is hope.
For the past couple months I have been following BNO News on Twitter and FriendFeed. Unlike their mainstream counterparts the service does a great job of only reporting news worthy of the “breaking” label. I can attest to this as well as their ability to deliver breaking news before anyone else. I have found them to consistently report news 10-15 minutes before it hits mainstream websites or blogs and well before it is ever reported on TV.
To date, you have been able to follow BNO News on Twitter, FriendFeed or by email updates. BNO has over 800,000 followers on Twitter and about 5,500 on FriendFeed. However, they have just announced that they will be releasing an iPhone app in early August that will offer “push” notifications. The app will cost $1.99 to buy as well as a $0.99 a month subscription fee to receive the push alerts.
While you can certainly get the same functionality by subscribing via SMS to their Twitter account, this option may be cheaper for you depending on your SMS plan. In addition, the iPhone app will allow more precise control over what breaking news stories you receive “push” alerts for. If you simply subscribe via SMS to their Twitter account you could be overwhelmed with updates since you don’t have this control.
I am personally really excited about this app as well as the other “push” apps that are beginning to populate the iPhone’s app store. For news junkies or journalists who must know breaking news the second it happens this app will be a must have.