Reports: Google works on ‘Propeller,’ a Flipboard competitor

Google is reportedly working on a social and news reader, according to reports this week from tech blogger Robert Scoble and All Things Digital’s Kara Swisher.

Swisher reported Thursday that the new product is called Google Propeller, and it will present articles in a magazine-like format. The new service will compete with apps such as Flipboard and Zite.

Swisher reported that this is just one of the many social applications the search giant is planning, but there’s no word on when those other apps may be launching.

The speculation comes ahead of Facebook’s f8 conference next week, where the social network is expected to unveil several new features for its site, including a music service. Facebook has ramped up its competition with Google’s social network, Google+, recently by adding features that emulate the more granular sharing and privacy settings that G+ has built in from its launch.

Facebook has said that it’s also planning to unveil products that will “enable a new class of social apps” and that it will be helping its developers learn to build better social applications.

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Hayley Tsukayama covers consumer technology for The Washington Post.

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