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January 8, 2014

Yahoo launches Summly-based app

Yahoo News Digest offers users summaries of all the stories they are interested in.

By CBR Staff Writer

Yahoo has launched a news summary app based on Summly, the app it bought for a reported $30m last year.

Yahoo News Digest is now available on the App Store, and gives users two daily summaries of the news they have expressed interest in.

Nick D’Aloisio developed Summly as a 15-year-old and is now Yahoo’s manager of mobile and emerging products.

He said: "With Summly, we learned that people don’t necessarily have the time to read a lengthy article, especially when they have limited screen real-estate while they’re on the go.

"By giving powerful algorithmic summaries, we found that people were willing to consume more content when it was boiled down to the most important bits."

Using software algorithms that go through a range of online publications, the app then summarises the content in terms of ‘atoms’.

Atoms in this context are particular blocks of text, infographics, maps and Wikipedia extracts about a topic, which are then assembled next to photos, videos and links to the news sources.

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Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer said: "We wanted to harness the power of the web on topics we love.

"We found inspiration in magazines with an editorial voice and combined that elegance of magazines to create a new product."

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