News Anchor 2.0 is launched today with the Mac App Store’s debut. With News Anchor you can now listen to your favorite blogs and news sites and simply sit back, relax, and enjoy as the virtual newscaster reads you the news.
The look and feel have been completely revamped with a fresh selection of news casters, changeable backgrounds, and full screen mode. News Anchor now also has a modality window mode that you can use to watch the news while continuing with other tasks with your computer.
Among the new features are podcast export and individual channel settings. With podcast export you can now listen to your reading lists from your iPod or most other music players. You can also individually assign different voices to each channels in News Anchor, useful if you want to listen to non-English channels and you have the appropriate text-to-speech voice installed.
Here are the summary of enhancements made in News Anchor 2.0:
- Customizable voice & presenter. Users may now choose a different text-to-speech voice besides Alex (which was the only that can be used in 1.0) and select a presenter to match the voice. This may also be used to support non-English news channels (or RSS feeds) when users have the appropriate voice installed.
- Podcasts creation. News Anchor can now optionally generate audio podcast files for users to take on-the-go on their music players.
- Full screen mode. News Anchor can take the entire screen for presenting the channels.
- Modality window mode. Users may choose to display channels in a small window that is always on top of other windows.
- Apple Remote support. Control News Anchor from the Mac’s infrared remote.
- Background refresh. Refresh data and generate channel episodes even when News Anchor is not running. This will ensure that News Anchor will always be ready with the latest episode when it is started.
- Limit on article age. Each channel may limit how old an article can be when the episode is generated.
- User interface improvements, performance enhancements, and less CPU usage.
News Anchor 2 requires Mac OS X Snow Leopard (10.6.6) or better.