A solid app gets even better today with the ability to read aloud saved articles on an Android device. This will make Pocket, already one of my most used apps, an even bigger part of my day, allowing me to hear offline articles at spare moments.

Pocket reads the web aloud on Android

One of my most used free apps, Pocket, added the ability to read articles aloud on Google Android devices on Tuesday. Formerly known as Read It Later, Pocket lets you read saved web pages while offline, and the newest version takes advantage of text-to-speech capabilities in Android. With the “Listen” feature, you can now hear the text of saved web pages anytime you have a few minutes in a quiet space.

I tested the new Listen functionality in Pocket and it works quite well. On my Galaxy Nexus phone with Android 4.1, there was no configuration involved, nor any speech engines needed to install. I simply updated Pocket, went to a recently saved article in the app and hit the Listen button in the app menu. You can pause the reading and control the speed through a Fast/Slow toggle bar.

One of the main reasons I use Pocket as my web clipping platforms is the widespread support across many devices: I can save articles from any browser and read them on practically any device, including those running iOS. Unfortunately, the Pocket team has no immediate plans to bring the Listen feature to iOS because “iOS doesn’t currently provide a text-to-speech API.”

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  1. iOS may not provide an API for it, but text-to-speech is built in to the dang phone – if you turn on text-to-speech under accesability, any text you select gives an option to be read aloud.

  2. If I can get an app to read my email to me as I drive….

    1. There’s a new smartphone app coming in October that reads email aloud and gives you the ability to send replies (all hands-free). Its’ called Talkler (just saw the website today).


  3. Perfect_Android_TTS Wednesday, September 19, 2012

    Try it with IVONA text-to-speech voices. It works great even fantastic!

  4. Having the ability to pause the reading and control the speed is huge. These options reminds me of a new app, Talkler, that offers similar controls as it reads email aloud to the user.

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