Wikipedia update brings major redesign and offline reading

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There are some pretty great Wikipedia apps out there already (my favorite is Das Referenz, an iPad app which turns Wikipedia pages into what looks like 17th century book entries), but Wikipedia has just made a gambit to be best of the bunch with a major redesign of its own iOS app.

Version 4.0 of Wikipedia Mobile sports a total overhaul of the app’s design, with a complete native rewrite that makes searching for information a faster and more enjoyable experience.

There’s now an added contents sidebar, which lets users navigate around articles quickly and easily, while would-be editors can now edit Wikipedia from inside the app for the first time ever.

There’s also the ability to select and save pages for offline reading — letting you browse them even when you don’t have an Internet connection.

Finally the app makers boast of the app’s localization and internationalisation support, which allows seamless transitions to reading Wikipedia written in another language.

Despite lacking some of the graphical flourishes of an app like Das Referenz, Wikipedia’s official iOS app is completely ad free. “We’re a nonprofit, so we’re not in the business of making money from the app,” the developers tell Cult of Mac. “This enables us to focus on creating a great distraction-free reading experience, staying true to the values that govern Wikipedia, like user privacy.”

If you’re interested in giving Wikipedia Mobile a go it can be downloaded from the App Store free of charge, available for all iOS devices running iOS 6.0 and above.

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About the author

Luke DormehlLuke Dormehl is a UK-based journalist and author, with a background working in documentary film for Channel 4 and the BBC. He is the author of The Formula: How Algorithms Solve All Our Problems, And Create More and The Apple Revolution, both published by Penguin/Random House. His tech writing has also appeared in Wired, Fast Company, Techmeme, and other publications. He'd like you a lot if you followed him on Twitter.

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