Being a blogger may not be as difficult as being a firefighter or a doctor or even an accountant, but that doesn’t mean bloggers don’t need some help from time to time. Whether in need of inspiration for story ideas, or simply dying for ways to actually get their posts up, there were plenty of apps in 2011 that catered to the blogging crowd. Here are my picks for the five best apps for bloggers in 2011.
Blogging took many forms in 2011 but Pinterest, an app that takes what Tumblr started on the web and brings it to iOS, might be the most fascinating of the bunch going forward. Like Tumblr, the emphasis in Pinterest is on brevity. A picture with a brief caption fits the bill on a Pinterest post. But instead of posting a funny picture and calling it a day, the Pinterest app creates a collage of the things the user likes. As if the song “My Favorite Things” was turned into an app.
The app’s added social element — allowing users to re-pin and comment on things they liked from other people’s pages — completes the social cycle for this new kind of blogging. Long winded opinions are out, and showing off pictures of your new kicks are in.
If you are a local news-oriented blogger looking for story ideas to move your readers, the Patch app should be on your radar. Patch provides hyperlocal news to numerous communities in over fifteen states across the country. With the app, users can find out the latest news in the community they are covering along with a list of events going on in the area. That’s perfect fodder for newsy bloggers.
Patch also lets users get the blogging process on early by allowing comments on stories and user-uploaded photos. Again, Patch breaks away from the traditional news model of one person, one website, one voice and opens up their editorial process to an entire community. Call it whatever you want, but Patch served bloggers well in 2011.
Being a blogger often means learning how to function without the creature comforts of a cozy office. FileHound attempts to make life a little easier by providing access to the documents, pictures and music stored on your home computer, over your iPhone. Within just a few taps you can see a file tree of your computer’s multimedia right on your iPhone screen.
FileHound also lets you edit your files on-the-go. Hop into the app, make the changes to your word document and save it, no syncing necessary. Editing on-the-go is a feature that came in handy for me quite a few times in 2011, which is part of the reason I think so highly of FileHound.
Maybe Blogger isn’t as hip or interesting as it was a few years ago, but that doesn’t mean its iPhone app debut isn’t noteworthy. The Blogger app gives you total control of your Blogger accounts right on your iPhone. You can write and edit posts, save them as drafts, and add labels or view previously published posts just like you were sitting on your laptop at home.
Blogger also offers up the iPhone-specific feature of being able to take a picture on your iPhone and put it right into a post. Sure, that idea isn’t exactly reinventing the wheel, but it shows a solid understanding of how the app can go beyond the norm. If you’re using a Blogger account this app is a must-have, and if you aren’t, the Blogger app makes a strong argument that you should be.
Blogsy (iPad, $4.99)
Blogging on the iPad makes a lot of sense, and using Blogsy to help you out is a no-brainer. The app allows for easy editing by letting users drag and drop pictures from Flickr and Google image search, and throwing in links simply by dropping in the URLs to their posts.
Blogsy also provides text-editing options like changing font size, font style, text color and text background color. Essentially, if you can do it on your laptop’s blogging software you can do it with Blogsy. Finding a decent blog-posting app for under $5 is a true steal, and Blogsy is exactly that.
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