As I’m sure you’re already aware, the Wall Street Journal has released an app in the Android Market. We’ve got our hands on it, and Chris Davies is on the case. He’s taking a peek at the app using the lovely Samsung Galaxy Tab, one of the large-screen devices this app is made to fit. This app is free to download with limited access upon basic registration, or for full access to everything WSJ has to offer, it’s $3.99 per week.
Portrait and landscape orientations supported, each article accessed after reading a preview on the main screen by clicking in – two of our editors in different parts of the world noticed a bit of lag getting into these articles over Wifi. Subscriber-only articles can be previewed, but only the first few lines are visible (unless, of course, you pay for this content, in which case you’ll be able to see everything,) subscriber-only videos are marked with a tiny cute key.
Each article is able to be saved for later reading, but you must read that article before the next day’s edition comes in, ’cause then it’ll have disappeared. The app is updated automatically upon each new edition, this event marked on your Android notifications bar. In place of multitouch pinch-zooming, there’s font size buttons for individual articles and page up/down bars on the bottom right of the screen.
For video, there’s an odd quirk of a giant play button in the center of the rectangle that anywhere else would load the video, instead you’ve got to hit a small plus symbol in the upper right before they’ll go. There’s a stock price quote feature for seeing all your favorite watched companies, working with a Watchlist to keep track of your portfolio.
Wrapping up, we’re all sort of down on subscription prices, especially when they’re $3.99 a week that might end up being in addition to whatever you currently pay for your online access to WSJ (for now, if you’ve got that online access, your subscription to this Android version is free.) A pinch-to-zoom function would be extremely welcome, and the lag moving from page-to-page is something that should be looked at. On the other hand, as the first “proper” Android table app, it’s a real solid one. Now comes the tests on every other Android tab platform – good luck!