In iOS 5, Apple has taken services like Instapaper and Read It Later head-on with a new feature called “Reader.” Like the similar feature that has existed in Safari on the Mac, Reader for iOS 5 will strip a webpage in Mobile Safari of unneeded images and ads for a more enjoyable reading experience.
Articles can also be saved for reading later on any iDevice that’s set up with your iCloud account. Bookmarking is a thing of the past.
When you tap the Reader icon in Mobile Safari’s address bar, web pages will be converted to look like this:
If you use Instapaper or Read It Later, you’ll see the striking resemblance. Will the other, third party solutions for this type of service become obsolete when consumers start using Reader in iOS 5?
The developer of Instapaper, Marco Arment, doesn’t think so,
“If Reading List gets widely adopted and millions of people start saving pages for later reading, a portion of those people will be interested in upgrading to a dedicated, deluxe app and service to serve their needs better. And they’ll quickly find Instapaper in the App Store.
So I’m tentatively optimistic. Our world changes quickly, especially on the cutting edge, and I really don’t know what’s going to happen. (Nobody does.) But the more potential scenarios I consider, the more likely it seems that Safari’s Reading List is either going to have no noticeable effect on Instapaper, or it will improve sales dramatically. Time will tell.”
I absolutely love Instapaper, and while Reader does look nice, it won’t be replacing my Instapaper habits at all. The main downfall to Reader is that it’s restricted to one browser. I work in multiple browsers, not just Safari, and Instapaper is useful for me because it goes with me across all of the browsers and platforms I use.
What about you? Does Reader look like a service you’ll use?