Thirst is a newsreader and news-discovery app with a personalized twist. It has a magazine-like tiled layout that reminds me of Flipboard. Each tile is a news category and the default homescreen includes a broad range of categories like sports, politics and tech. You can narrow these categories down based on your interests.
The app breaks away from other newsreaders by relying on an intelligent search feature to find news articles instead of an RSS fead. Thirst uses an algorithm to search the web for articles that fit those categories you have put on your homescreen. Being an Apple fan, my Thirst homescreen has Apple, iPad, iPad mini and app categories. The content within those categories comes from a wide variety of news sources, some of which I have never encountered before.
Thirst also has a social side and includes a discussion feature that lets you write and respond to comments on those articles that you read. Like most commenting forums, the comments are as good as the people reading and responding. I saw my fair share of useless drivel and a few engaging discussions that I was happy to read. Besides commenting, users can also share articles via Facebook or Twitter.
I'm a longtime RSS user and have to admit that I was skeptical about Thirst at first. The app won me over when it used its intelligent search to pull up new and interesting articles that I never would have read if I had only browsed through my favorite RSS feeds.
Thirst is available for free from the iOS App Store. It's worth a download just to checkout the news-discovery feature of the app. Use it long enough and you might find that you have become hooked on this search-based way of reading the news.