NewsBreak 2.0 – With Podcast Support!

newsbreak_icon.gifWe’re excited to announce that we just released NewsBreak 2.0. This new version of our award winning news reader includes a number of great new features. The one we are the most excited about is full support for podcasts and enclosures.

Listen to your favorite podcasts, watch vidcasts, view enclosed images, and much more with this new version of NewsBreak. With an interface even novices find easy to use, NewsBreak makes it simple to take advantage of this new feature.

We’ve also received special permission to add Microsoft Live Search to NewsBreak. Now, when you search for new feeds, you can use either Syndic8 or Live Search giving you an even bigger selection to choose from.

Plus, we’ve updated the menus for better one-handed navigation on Windows Mobile 5.0 devices, added full support for Windows Mobile 6, polished the program up with a new look, and added even more keyword icons so you can personalize your feeds and find just the news you need.

And of course we’ve saved the best for last. To celebrate this new release we’re offering NewsBreak for just $7.95 for a limited time! Save $12.00 off the regular price!

Now, a little something for our blog readers. You already know that we give away software each month to a random poster. Well here is an excuse to post! Help us fill out the channel lists we provide to NewsBreak readers by posting your favorite news feeds, podcasts, and vidcasts here! We’ll add the very best ones to our online feed list!

31 thoughts on “NewsBreak 2.0 – With Podcast Support!

  1. Kay

    Wow, sounds awesome!

    So, I have 2 comments:

    1.) Why wasnt there a beta? (if there was, why did no one tell me? :( )
    and
    2.) That icon looks sexy.

  2. Marc Post author

    Hi Kay…there was a closed beta period (about 2-3 weeks) and everyone in the beta team was sent an email at the start. I’ll send you one today to make sure we’ve got the right address on file!!

    And we’re glad you like the icon! :)

  3. Adam

    My issue with Newsbreak is that I am not ready to commit my handheld as my primary newsreader (although I would be fine with it as my primary podcast receiver). Is there some way that what I read on my computer is kept out of the RSS stream and what I read on the handheld is kept off of my computer?

  4. Marc Post author

    Sorry Adam…2.0 doesn’t include any desktop synchronization so we don’t have a solution for that…not yet anyhow! ;)

  5. Sam

    Congrats on the new release!
    I’ve looked for an upgrade policy from NewsBreak 1.
    Can you help?
    Thanks.

  6. Brandon

    Just bought the upgrade. This is one of the highest use programs I have on my BlackJack so it was definitely worth every penny.

    Nice job!!

    As for feeds… I don’t think you list any of these (yet)
    Experience Mobility — http://experiencemobility.com/wordpress/?feed=rss2

    Lifehacker — They’ve got a couple different versions — http://feeds.gawker.com/lifehacker/full AND http://feeds.gawker.com/lifehacker/excerpts.xml

    Solsie.com — http://solsie.com/feed/

  7. Eric Dush

    Looks great! I just installed the demo and am considering purchasing. I will be using this ONLY for podcasts though, so a couple questions…

    1. Can we change the default media player to CorePlayer?
    2. I can’t seem to get it to automatically download the podcasts. I have to go into the feed and click the little Play button to get anything to download. I checked. I have auto update set to Activesync available, I have went into each podcast and set a minumum number of items and selected “Only when connected to a PC”. Am I missing something else?

  8. Marc Post author

    1. It should select the default player for the file type in question.
    2. Yep. Go to the Properties for the individual channel. There is a tab there where you can select the Podcast properties and tell it when and how many to download.

  9. Ron Campbell

    Ow. Burned. Not 3 hours after I register my 22-day old copy of NewsBreak 1.2 you go and release 2.0. This same thing happened to me a few hours after I registered RepliGo 1.0. I told myself then I would hold onto a piece of trial software for the full term in the future to avoid this kinda thing. Oh well…

    How long should we wait for the automatic emails before trying to track down our comp upgrades? Thanks.

  10. Marc Post author

    You’re not burned. You get the upgrade free! :) I’d say you are in luck. As for the unlock codes for 2.0, we’ll have them all out within a week or so. And if you install the trial of 2.0 today you should get another 30 days so you can start using 2.0 right away. Finally, all your channels will get retained so installing 2.0 over 1.2 is fine.

  11. Greg

    I just downloaded the trial version and installed it on my WM 5.0 so-called “smart” phone (Cingular 3125). So far, so good. Like a previous poster (Eric Dush), I would intend to use it primarily for podcasts – in my case, to maintain a small set that I listen to during my commute and/or for long drives, that I had previously loaded “automatically” to my phone with Doppler/Media Player/ActiveSync (via USB). What a headache! Of course the true test will be to see how well NewsReader manages automated updates over the next few days (i.e., will it update channels reliably and restrict the podcasts to the desired number). But I am loving the fact that I can use an internet pass-through via bluetooth to my PC to load the files; something I coudn’t seem to automate with ActiveSTINK via bluetooth.

    Several comments/questions:

    1) like Adam I would love the capability in a future release to sync with my desktop, along the lines of what you do with the eWallet synch program

    2) I am assuming that NewsReader checks for channel updates even when the program has not been loaded by me – at intervals as specified via the general Menu/Options/Update as well as Menu/Channel/Properties for each channel. Is that indeed true, and if so what are the performance hits on the phone? What happens if you interrupt the download (e.g., by severing the activesync connection).

    3) Is there anyway to create something akin to a playlist, wherein with a single click I can play a series of channels in a specificed order? I see that I can group channels into categories, but there appears to be no way to “launch” a group of feeds. I realize that the program was initially developed to manage primarily text-based RSS feeds, and likely still excels in that area, but there is a pressing need for better management of audio/video feeds on the Windows Mobile platform, and with just a few tweaks this software could rock even more!

    4) I think that category management could be improved somewhat. In particular, I noticed that if you move a channel to a category, and then delete the category, it deletes all of the channels contained therein as well – I think that it would be more logical to give the user the option to permanently delete channels in the category or move them to the “All categories” category. If at all possible, I think it would also make more sense to list the category for a given channel in the properties section, and make it changeable there, rather than having a seperate category menu.

    Cheers, Greg (a former denizen of A2, now residing in Maine)

  12. Ze

    I installed the demo and i’m very happy.

    And for the low cost i’m thinking i will buy the full version.

  13. Mathieu

    Brilliant release!

    I am a former user of 1.2 and am planning on upgrading. So far it fits with all my requirements, except maybe:

    – The ability to download images in feeds, for offline browsing (flash cards are cheap these days, and as I use wifi to sync, bandwidth is not an issue). Make it user selectable!

    – Some podcasts/vidcasts can very slow to download and sometimes nearly stall. It would be great to be able to cancel them automatically based on time / bandwidth criteria.
    e.g. “cancel a download if it has been running at less than x KB/s for the last 30 sec” As NewsBreak does not support multiple downloading of enclosures, the daily update can become endless if such a podcast is under heavy load.

    Maybe a few ideas for a future release ;)

  14. Rocky

    I bought this the other day since it was such a good price and I needed a good RSS reader for my VX6700. But I can’t get podcasts to automatically download. I have Auto Update set to “When ActiveSync avaliable”, and I have the feed for the podcast that I want to download set to Automatically download podcasts = “always” and the keep this many podcasts = “4”. Is there something else I need to do?

  15. Mark

    Great product! I’ve been looking for a quality piece of software that could download podcasts directly to my 6700.

    Most of my podcasts work fine, but ones hosted on SwitchPod do not seem to load. Some examples are:

    http://www.switchpod.com/users/liketh4t/feed.xml
    http://www.switchpod.com/users/pokerwire/feed.xml
    http://www.switchpod.com/users/4texasholdem/feed.xml

    These feeds load fine in other podcast catchers. Is there a workaround, or will this be addressed in a subsequent release?

    Thanks

  16. Ken

    Thanks for feedback, Mark.

    The feeds you reference from SwitchPod are not valid RSS — which is likely the problem. You can see this for yourself by going to http://www.feedvalidator.org/ and entering one of the SwitchPod URLs.

    We will contact SwitchPod and see if they can update their feeds.

  17. Mark

    Thanks Ken,

    I’m not sure what happened but the switchpod feeds are working now…I’m not going to question it. :)

    Very impressed with NewsBreak 2.0!

  18. Marcin

    I have some problems with NewsBreak – it crashes on some Headlines – for example on “WikiMonkey does Windows Mobile(r)” (14-03-2007) from Astraware Channel .
    I don’t know if it is platform specific – I have SPV C600 with Cingular ROM.

    Also I would find useful some features:

    – displaying categories and channels as a tree:
    Category A
    – Channel A1
    – Channel A2
    Category B
    – Channel B1
    – Channel B2
    – Channel B3

    – keys 1 and 3 act as Page Up and Page Down in Headline view.

  19. Marc Post author

    First, I’ve never seen a headline crash NewsBreak. If you can drop our support folks a line we’d love to get some more details.

    Also, great ideas! I’ll definitely keep them in mind.

  20. Rick Derks

    Wow!!! Great product!
    Sorry, I’m so late in posting, I just found the Ilium blog.

    I have eWallet and NewsBreak. I have asked before the the podcast download feature and now you have done it. I guess I will need to permanetly attache the Bluetooth headset. NewsBreak before was a great product and now you have made it the ‘Best in Show’.

    So, having said that, I do have a couple of points/issues to make.

    1) I am running on a 3125 carrier is Cingular (ATT), WM5. Everthing works great, except I have noticed that after downloading a few podcasts, the IE mobile doesn’t work. It will open, and when clicking a site the connecting option appears, but nothing ever is displayed. I bounce the phone and all is well until it seems the downloads go off again, and then back to no IE.

    2)It since the phone uses additional battery power when downloading, I will have to ‘plug in’ more often. I especially do it, plug in that is, over night. So, if we could schedule all download between certain hours, during power time or something. Then ‘wouldn’t it be nice’ to get your downloads every morning.

    My Favorites:
    Pacific Coast Hellway (carefull some content x rated) and of cours Scott Sigler. If you have not yet listened to one of Scott’s storys. Do it now!

    Thanks again for a great product.

  21. Marc Post author

    Hi Rick.

    Great idea for the timing of downloads. It’s something a few people have asked about and we’re looking into.

    As for the IE thing, that isn’t something we’ve had anyone else run into. We’ll definitely take a look and see if we can reproduce the problem. You might also want to send a note to our support folks ( support@iliumsoft.com ).

  22. admin

    Hi John,

    Please send an email to Support (support@iliumsoft.com) and they’ll help figure out why automatic updates aren’t running for you.

    Thanks,
    Ken

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