Instapaper

Instapaper - Features, Pricing, Alternatives, and More

Stephanie Gonzaga
Written by Stephanie GonzagaLast updated October 9, 2015

There's so much new content thrown at us constantly online, it's become a challenge to find time to truly read anything these days. Instapaper is one of the original reading later apps designed to combat this problem by giving you one place to save anything for later. You can save articles, videos, song lyrics, book reviews, social media updates, and more in one app where you can read, view, and organize them whenever you have time. Instapaper will strip down the important things—the article text and images, the video itself, the recipe steps—and save just that so you can easily catch up without being distracted by ads and comments.

If you love a simplified reading experience, Instapaper's minimalist design will impress you from the start. You'll see a list of your articles in the center of the page, with folders and options on the left. Its clean, distraction-free interface coupled with beautiful typography encourages focus and concentration read through all of your saved content.

When viewing a single article, move your mouse to show a menu with customization features. Pick from a number of built-in typefaces, choose the line height and background color that work best for you, or on a mobile device choose its audio options to have the article read back to you.. You can read an article or watch a video within the app, or click on its link to do so at its original source. Then, you can like, archive, delete, or share it with others.

With your newfound focus on the best articles, you'll find quotes you want to save and share with others. The newly added Notes feature allows you to highlight, comment on, and share text from articles right from Instapaper. It's simple to use and comes in very handy when conducting research—you can highlight important sections, then come back and reference them easily later.

There's several ways to save articles to Instapaper. Right from the app, you can click the "Add link" button found beside your username and paste a link to save it. The quick way, though, is to use the Instapaper browser extensions or bookmarklets. Install them in your favorite browser, then just tap the Instapaper button whenever you're on an article you want to read later. You'll also find many 3rd party apps—including popular feed readers like Feedly—that integrate with Instapaper so you can save articles without leaving your favorite apps.

As your collection of saved articles, videos, and updates grows, the need to manage them all becomes crucial. Instapaper includes folders that you can move articles and videos into for later reference, so things don't get too cluttered. Plus, there's the Liked and Archive listings in Instapaper, each of which show the articles you've already read and want to come back to later.

Each of these tools are handy on your computer, but you likely won't want to sit back and read through your favorite articles at your desk. One of Instapaper's highlights is enabling you to enjoy reading your content at any time and place through its free mobile apps for iOS and Android that carry the same minimalist design Instapaper is loved for. Your reading place will stay synced on any device, so you can start reading on your desktop, listen to a bit more of the article on your phone, then finish up on your tablet at night. Or, if you prefer reading on a Kindle, Instapaper can automatically send a "magazine" of articles to your Kindle each day as an easy way to catch up on your reading from an eInk screen.

Instapaper's core features are free, but with a $2.99/month subscription you can unlock a number of handy extra features. Full-text search, unlimited notes, an ad-free experience, faster speed reading, and text-to-speech in the mobile apps—all come with a subscription. If you're simply looking for a way to save and share your content for later, the free account is enough. If you plan on saving hundreds of links and what to search through them, add notes, and send individual articles to your Kindle, paying for Premium makes sense.

There's no reason to skip over an article just because you discover it during the work day—but there's also no reason to read it right then. Instapaper lets you save the best stuff for later, so you'll never let that useful article, cooking recipe, book review, or YouTube video slip away. It'll turn the web into a calm reading experience that works on your schedule.

Have any feedback on this overview, or something we should change? Let us know!

Instapaper Features

  • Save articles, videos and more to read offline in a simplified interface

    • Create folders and easily organize your saved content
    • Speed read through articles or listen to them with dictation
    • Highlight and add notes to articles
    • iOS and Android apps available, along with Kindle integration

Instapaper Pricing

  • Free plan for reading articles offline

    • $2.99/month Premium account for unlimited notes and highlights, full-text search, and advanced Kindle sync

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