Instapaper Gets Minor Update With Major New Features


The modern and good-looking cell view (left) and the new dimmed images in night mode
The modern and good-looking cell view (left) and the new dimmed images in night mode

Instapaper has just been bumped from v4.1 to 4.1.1, But despite this tiny numerical increment, there are a few big changes worth writing about.

Marco Arment, the coffee-slurping, BMW-driving playboy developer of the iPad’s best read-later app, has fixed a few bugs introduced in the Retina-ready v4.1 released last week. These include some odd rendering problems for the new default font, Elena, and some speeding up to the page animations which were slowed down by some weird iPad 3 oddities.

But there are also a few new features, and one reversion that should please the luddites who hate the cool cell-table layout of the article list.

A long time ago, when the iPad was still young, Instapaper for iPad was little more than a blown-up version of the iPhone app, with a full-width list view of your saved articles. Once Marco actually started using the iPad to read, he realized that this sucked, and made a much nicer grid view.

The problem was, many users hated it.

In this latest version, you can choose between the two. I briefly switched back and noticed just how bad the old version looked. I’m sticking with the new one.

Also new is an addition to dark mode. If you’re reading in bed late at night, everything can be set nice and dark to save your eyes, and not disturb your sleeping bedmate. Everything, that is, except images, which would shine into your retinas and drive you crazy. Now, the photos are dimmed too, and you can tap to make them full-brightness (double-tap to dim again). This is another example of Marco’s attention to detail.

There are a few more tweaks, which can be found in the release notes, but these are the high points. If you have Instapaper already, then you likely already saw this update. If you don’t have Instapaper, then shame on you. What on Earth are you thinking?