EDMOND — Media outlets continue to search for new ways to get their information to as many viewers as possible.
UCentral is the student media network at the University of Central Oklahoma, featuring traditional media (television, radio, newspaper) and new media (Web, netcasts, social networking) created by students majoring in professional media.
“The idea of an app for student media formalized last fall after an informal survey of UCO students indicated they would prefer to receive their news over a mobile device rather than through traditional mediums,” said Jeff Hagy, UCO Student Media general manager.
The app was approved by Apple in July for iPhone users to buy and download.
“The app itself highlights news, sports, video and opinion pieces from the student newspaper and the student television newscast. It also streams live audio from the student radio station and a live feed from the student television station,” Hagy said.
“By offering mass communication media students new media opportunities, in addition to traditional media outlets, our students are able to prepare themselves for the modern media industry,” he said.
Ryan Wolf, a mass communications-broadcasting senior, said many people are turning to social media to get their news.
“I think the sky is the limit with this app,” Wolf said.
Along with being on the UCentral Student Media team, Wolf is an associate producer for KWTV-9.
“Working at an actual news station, I see how they utilize their apps to post stories, breaking news, and even live stream during breaking news or breaking weather situations,” Wolf said. “And I think this is going to be tremendous for our students at UCO.”
The primary themes in the creation of the app were convenience and furthering the reach of UCentral's media.
“I love to read the newspaper, but I go, go, go all day, every day, and there are millions of people just like me,” said Chris Brannick, a senior journalism student. “Convenience is the X-factor here.”
When it came to choosing a paid service to filter UCentral's content, Hagy chose the least expensive route, which included student Bill Southard and himself writing code for the iPhone.
“We have had several ask if we plan on building an Android app,” Hagy said. “Unfortunately, there are no plans at this time. However, if there are coders who would like to volunteer their time in building an Android app, I am definitely interested in talking with them.”
How to get it
To buy and download UCentral's app, visit http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/ucentral/id545426631?mt=8.