App Reviewed on: iPhone 5
iPhone Integration Rating:
User Interface Rating:
Re-use / Replay Value Rating:
I hardly use the iPad as a means of reading anything substantial, and I definitely don't use my iPhone for it. There's just too much pinching and swiping to try and get things to line up properly for me to bother with any of it. An app like YACReader, on the other hand, has turned me into a believer.
YACReader was specifically crafted to turn iPads and iPhones into viable graphic novel readers. It's compatible with .cbz, .cbr, .zip, or .rar files and will turn the user's iOS device into a one-stop comic book shop. Files can be imported through iTunes sharing, direct link to a computer, or even with Drobbox. Once everything is loaded up users just have to tap on their chosen comic and start reading. Tapping on the sides of the screen will flip between the pages and everything orients automatically when the device is tilted.
Once the initial setup is finished, YACReader is incredibly easy to use. Linking with Dropbox is pretty much instantaneous so long as both apps are already installed and transferring comics is a simple matter of dragging and dropping. Synching with iTunes and linking to a computer directly are equally as simple. It's also remarkably functional as a reader thanks to the no-frills page turning and automatic orientation. This also applies to zoomed in views, whether in portrait or landscape modes: tapping the edges of the screen will move the view along the page in small increments rather than switching to a whole new page. It makes flipping through lager page formats a breeze, even on the iPhone's smaller screen.
YACReader is certainly great, but not perfect. I encountered an odd problem after viewing a comic in landscape mode, then switching to portrait. After the image reoriented it simply refused to change pages. I had to exit the comic through the menu and jump back into it to be able to flip through again. It’s also a shame that there's no way to directly browse or download comics through the app itself. Finding and adding them through the computer isn't exactly a chore, but being able to do so using just my iPhone would be even better. It's also a shame that there are no sample comics included, which means users have to either have their own personal libraries ready to load up or start searching before they can get any use out of it.
Sure I wish I could download comics directly through my phone, and that I could have had at least one "demo" to flip through before linking things up, but YACReader is still a remarkable comic reading app. It's intuitive, simple, and even makes something as tiny as the iPhone 5's screen a viable option for a little visual e-reading.