Are you finding it difficult trying to keep up with all of your interests on the Internet? It’s a growing challenge as more information is created daily and a greater number of devices are connecting to the web. For several years, a solid RSS reader helped me manage information overload and a I later turned to Instapaper: a clever service that captures full web pages for later reading.
Instapaper is great, but from a mobile app perspective, the software has been focused solely on Apple’s iOS platform. There are compatible third-party apps for other devices, but that’s not an ideal situation: if the official app APIs change, for example, those other apps could cease to function for a time. That’s why I just made the jump to ReadItLater, which just added an official Android client to its supported platform list for $0.99 in the Android Market.
Using a bookmark on my desktop browser, sending an webpage to ReadItLater is just a tap away. And later, when I have time to read, all of the saved articles are readily available. Exclusive to the Android version of ReadItLater — it was available prior for iOS devices — the Android version can be set for push synchronization of articles in the background. That means as soon as you send an article from either a desktop or mobile browser, it appears in the ReadItLater app.
There are two ways to read saved articles in the app: full web mode or text mode. The former shows the saved webpage as if you were reading it in a browser with all images, video, ads, etc…. while the later view is my preferred method: all but the text is stripped away, providing a clear simple view. In either mode, you can tap a sharing button to send the link to friends in a number of ways.
I’m doing just as much web surfing on mobile devices as I am on the desktop these days, so my first question was: how do I get web content from my phone or tablet over to ReadItLater? The answer is simple since I’m using the Dolphin Browser HD. In last month’s post offering eight reasons every Android owner should try this browser, the fifth in the list was the software’s support for add-ons. Sure enough, there’s a ReadItLater add-on for the browser, so now it’s just a button press to shoot content from mobile web to mobile app for later reading.
There are plenty of other third-party solutions in this space I could have simply used Instapaper’s web app. But the background sync and ability to read content while offline have me thinking that buying ReadItLater was the best buck I’ve spent this week.