Instapaper was once the king of the read later services, but was usurped by fuller-featured upstarts with better features and more liberal sharing policies (Instapaper, unlike Pocket, has no IFTTT triggers for instance). But it is slowly pulling itself back into the future, and this latest iPad update adds support for video and a new Browse function.
Is this enough to pull me back to Instapaper from Pocket? Actually yes, but not for the reason you think.
The iPad app gets the updates that the iPhone app recently enjoyed, namely:
- Sorting and filtering
- Better parsing and organization for videos
- Browse section to discover editorial and social articles
- More article options on swipe
- Pull to refresh
Plus a few tweaks like a darker dark mode. The Browse view is pretty nice, letting you find articles if your queue is empty, but an empty queue is something I can only dream of, and video and filtering alone aren’t enough to get me back. So what is it?
I read on the iPad mini, which is chronically short of RAM, and reloads every app from cold when I switch between them. Instapaper handles this gracefully, taking me back to the exact spot in article I was reading. Pocket dumps me at the main list screen, every single time. If I can remember what I was reading, it does at least keep my place in an article, but really Pocket, this is a pretty bad problem.
So back to Instapaper it is. If only it would add nice thumbnails to the overview.
Source: Instapaper Blog