UPDATED 3/4/11 - now with App of the Week video review

The Story

Here’s how the story plays out: you’re skimming the web on your smartphone in between meetings, spy an article that piques your interest but haven’t got the time to fully read and digest it. Instead of adding it as a bookmark in your browser you just save the web page in Read It Later and, as the name of the app suggests, you can return to the article at your leisure – offline. Yep, you don’t need a connection of any kind to read the pages you’ve saved.

the experience

Of course there’s a little more finesse to Read It Later than simply saving web pages in its native form. Firstly it delivers two layouts: the original web page design and a text only version, with a handy switch to toggle easily between both arrangements. The text rendering strips bare the online article of all annoying web artifacts, presenting it in a clean easy to read format with the occasional image for company. This text mode works like an eReader, letting you adjust the text size, switch between two fonts, justify the text alignment and change the background from white to black. If you stop reading mid-flow you can access it again via the ‘Current Reading’ section on the homepage and carry on from the exact place you left off. Naturally, you can then share the web link via the usual social networking channels or the entire article view in an email. Once you’ve finished the article you can either leave it in your ‘Reading List’ or clear the decks and archive it just in case you need to refer to it again. All articles are cached on either you phone’s memory or SD card for reading offline. Saving web articles is as easy as sharing it over email, Twitter and Facebook and it supports over 130 apps, including top third party web browsers like Dolphin HD, Skyfire, Mozilla Firefox and the new Opera Mini 6 and Mobile 11. Also reading articles isn’t just confined to your Android device; your registered account stretches to desktop viewing as well. Read It Later has sold a shed load on the Apple App Store and after using it, we can see why it so popular. OK, it did prove glitchy when toggling between text and web version of the article but once it settled down it performed without a hitch. It’s an incredibly convenient way to really digest those lengthy web articles at a leisurely pace and organise your online reading. At the time of writing, Read It Later Pro has 80% off its price, so we urge you to download the app now. Even at full price its worth buying. [Not a valid template]

The bottom line

A great way to catch up on your web reading. File under essential Android apps

Additional Info

Version reviewed Requires Android 2.1 or above

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Save web articles and read them offline at a later date


the good

  • » Genius offline mode
  • » Easy to read text-only presentation
  • » Features eReader functionality

the bad

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