As the interweb continues to become more saturated with sites competing with each other to provide the most shocking, informative and funniest news; it is becoming increasingly difficult to cut through the noise and find reliable sources of creative content. Whilst most of us are accustomed to sourcing the best real-time news through the likes of Twitter, or on social channels by those in our network, it is important that when you’re paralysed for information, or you just need some inspiration for creating great content ideas, you’ve got somewhere to go.

Here are my personal favourites that I regularly use as my go-to places to find original content and real-time news to help kick-start my creativity for the day…and they’re free!

1. Flipboard.

flipFlipboard has been created to replicate your personal magazine. It’s a single place to discover, collect and share the news you care about, whilst connecting your favorite social networks, publications and blogs to stay hooked up to the topics and people closest to you. The beauty of Flipboard includes recommended reading based on your likes, award-winning blogs, beautiful photography as well as audio and video.

Flipboard is free from the App Store and Google Play.

2. Prismatic

Prismatic is a social news curation, web and iPhone app. It is my daily source of inspiration for topics such as productivity, happiness and marketing. Here you’ll find information and news for all of your interests. It works through following people and interests that you care about and sharing stories that you won’t find anywhere else, presenting the user with a new way to discover, consume and share media. It also integrates with your social sites (such as Facebook and Twitter) to gather information about your interests to give you the most relevant stories to read.

Prismatic is free from the App Store and Google Play.

3. Pocket (Formerly Read It Later)

For when you find yourself in a dark hole of news and articles across your devices but with no time to read them; Pocket doubles up as an inspiration ‘inbox’ of all your favourite bits of news and content from across the web.  As part of the ‘Save it For Later’ apps, my favourite thing about Pocket is the ability to access and sync across platforms and devices so no matter where you are your favourite news stays in one place.

If you’ve decided to move to Pocket from Delicious or Instapaper, there is also a way to import your bookmarks. If you haven’t tried it, why not give Pocket a go now?

4. Banjo

Banjo is one of the more newly discovered apps on my list. Currently in beta phase, the app considers itself to be the ‘live internet’ giving you an access-all-areas pass to live events and breaking news. It brings users a collection of social signals organised by time, location and content. It works by indexing and curating breaking news and events allowing you to browse music, sports, and breaking news showcasing what’s happening live, anywhere in the world.

banjoThe app also has a nice back story, being conceived as a result of a missed flight at Boston’s Logan Airport. Founder Damien Patton didn’t realise that his friend, a fellow soldier from Desert Storm, was also in the airport, despite being a few feet from each other. Damien vowed to figure out a way of ensuring people were up to date with news and information, as well as location. So, he designed an app at the intersection of social media and location that would ensure you never missed out on the people you care about.

Banjo is available for free in the App Store and in Google Play

5. Feedly

Your news. Delivered. Recognised as one of Google’s top developers, Feedly remains on this list as my comfortable ‘go to’ place. Having replaced Google Reader, Feedly is primarily used by me for top line news from various blogs and publications. It’s a simple RSS news reader working across devices which spits out news in very manageable chunks, leaving the reader less overwhelmed than some of its competitors. As with the other names on this list, Feedly runs on a phone and tablet with automatic syncing between devices. It also makes sharing content on Twitter, Facebook and Google+ very simple, either directly or using Buffer. The app also integrates with Pocket, Instapaper and Evernote.

Feedly is available for free in the App Store and in Google Play.

Still stuck for content to share? If you need a quick-fix to shareable content, then you can always try recommended news from Buffer – a great place to read and share thought pieces and whitepapers.

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