Read-it-later service Pocket goes after Evernote with a $5/month premium service

Pocket, the service that lets users save articles, videos and other types of content to consume later on mobile devices and the web, is adding a paid tier. On Wednesday, the company launched Pocket Premium, which adds permanent archiving (rather than just link caching), tagging and search capabilities on top of its basic free capabilities. Pocket Premium is $4.99 a month or $44.99 a year.

Pocket, which now has 12 million users, rebranded (it was formerly called Read It Later) and made all its apps free in 2012. But now “it’s important that we take the first steps into becoming a revenue-generating business,” founder and CEO Nate Weiner told The Verge.

Pocket Premium is competing with Evernote, which also lets users save entire webpages and other types of content. It has a basic free level and a paid option offering more storage and other features, also $5 a month or $45 a year. As a paying Evernote user, I am not going to also pay for Pocket’s service (though I’d pay for the app if that were still an option). But Weiner claimed to The Verge, “Our No. 1 feature request for the past three years has been ‘Please let us pay you.’ There’s a huge contingent of our user base that just wants to be able to support us and knows that it helps us be a sustainable company.”