The Tech Herald

Google offers swift page perusal with Fast Flip

by Stevie Smith - Sep 16 2009, 19:45

Flipping fast! Image: Google.

In a move that’s likely to further solidify Google’s market strength while also addressing the current discontent felt toward the search giant by many print publishers, the California-based technology company’s Google Labs offshoot has unveiled Fast Flip.

Arriving as the latest in a steady procession of user features, Fast Flip organises a multitude of online sources on a single Web page via handy mini snapshots. Easy to peruse and select, these snapshots can be rapidly flipped through in order to create a more real-world print experience while eliminating the load times associated with individual pages.

“Fast Flip lets you browse sequentially through bundles of recent news, headlines and popular topics, as well as feeds from individual top publishers,” explained Google researcher Krishna Bharat in an official Google Blog post.

“As the name suggests, flipping through content is very fast, so you can quickly look through a lot of pages until you find something interesting,” added Bharat. “At the same time, we provide aggregation and search over many top newspapers and magazines, and the ability to share content with your friends and community.”

Google Fast Flip is presently supported by ad revenue partnerships with more than 35 leading content publishers, including heavyweights such as The New York Times, the Atlantic, the Washington Post, Salon, Fast Company, ProPublica and Newsweek.

Beyond giving its partners an opportunity to introduce new readers to their content, Google has said Fast Flip also tests its theory “that being able to read articles faster means people will read more of them, driving more ad revenue to publishers.”

Touting the benefits of swift browsing, natural magazine-style navigation, history-specific personalisation, and friend/community-based recommendations, Google’s Fast Flip feature is presently accessible through fastflip.googlelabs.com and is completely free to use.

Not just developed for desktop and notebook computer use, Google Fast Flip is also available in a tactile flipping format through Android-equipped handsets and Apple’s iconic iPhone smartphone.

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