Posts Tagged Offline Reading
Following a year long approval battle with Apple over it’s subscription service, Readbility made its App Store debut today. The web-based service that provides users with a stripped-down, clean view of any web article and allows saving for offline reading has been around for several years and is integrated into many apps, but a native iOS version was hard-won.
If you’re familiar with iOS 5’s reader option, now built into Safari, or if one has used apps like Instatpaper and Read It Later, there’s really nothing you haven’t seen before. The app is not as feature-rich as some alternatives, but it’s free, pretty, and handy. The app allows for URL input and minimal web searching, but using any of the browser plug-ins on a computer helps fill the reading list best.
Readibility states on their blog today, “We wanted to create something that makes it as easy as possible to queue up and take web articles anywhere you go on your iPhone or iPad. Our guiding principle was simple: get out of the reader’s way.”
We’ll have a complete review for you soon, but in the mean time if you try it out, please let us know what you think in the comments.
Instapaper is one of those ‘can’t live without’ kind of apps. Considered one of the best apps out there, one of the first inductees in our App Hall of Fame, Instapaper is the app to buy for those users who want to save articles for offline reading. It’s especially fortunate that regular support for the app is still there with the latest update (4.0) providing almost as big a list of changes as 3.0 did earlier this year.
Creator of Instapaper, Marco Arment has listed the full array within the update but here are the highlights.
Most pivotal for iPad owners is the complete overhaul of the iPad browsing interface for the app. Instapaper users can now enjoy a much more touch-friendly grid interface which promises to be easier and more attractive to look at. iPhone users get to enjoy a restyled and unified appearance that’s easy to use.
Other aesthestic changes are afoot with the reading screen no longer showing the top status bar by default amongst other things. Articles from many sites now display the site title, author name and published date were available.
True hardware brightness control is now possible thanks to iOS5, immediately protecting sensitive eyes when reading at night.
Selecting text and tapping define now enables users to look up terms in Wikipedia at the touch of a button and happily residing alongside the offline dictionary.
Articles can now be multi-selected, making archiving, deleting or moving to folders enmasse quick and easy.
Adding some social features to the mix, users can now view, via the Friends panel, all links posted to their Facebook news feed, Twitter timeline or Tumblr Dashboard.
The biggest change of all, however, is the new search feature available as part of a $1/month subscription service. Called Search Subscription, it adds server-side searching of the full contents of every article users have ever saved. It’s understandably powerful stuff and makes Instapaper even more useful than before.
Check out the full list of changes on Marco Arment’s site.