From Pocket to Instapaper

Some time ago I’ve described the issues that I’ve had since a new version of Read It Later, named Pocket, was introduced.
I’ve waited with hope for a new upgrade, but I had a huge disappointment with the latest version 16 June 2012. It didn’t fixed any of the two major problems, that I  experienced since new Pocket was introduced-
 
1. iPad app still didn’t show many of the saved links.

2. ability to rename articles on iPad still wasn’t restored.
I’ve posted the message into their forum. They did not show my comment on their forum( I would name it censorship, not moderation), but a few days ago I’ve received an email, recommending
“try logging out of the app on your iPad, and back in again.” Their suggestion helped,  but I don’t understand, why it is not posted as a recommendation on their support site.

So I decided to try InstAPaper on my iPad, Previously I’ve used it for Kindle. I never considered it before on iPad, because there were no free demo and I was very satisfied with RIL free and then RIL Pro. Currently InstAPaper cost $3, so the price is not an issue.

I’ve checked that it has most of features that I am using(e.g. renaming, folders) and I am quite happy with it now. Actually I am using Pocket (or RIL free) for old bookmarks( I have 1000+ stored on my iPad) and for new bookmarks I am using InstAPaper.

Having a solid experience with RIL/Pocket I’ve created a list of suggestions to Marco Arment to implement.
1. Some pages stored in InstAPaper have removed essential sections of the text. E.g in many blogs comments are not stored in  InstAPaper.
Some pages lost almost all of important links (e.g. http://www.lib.rus.ec/a/32416 -sorry, in Russian). RIL/Pocket has 2 modes to store offline- Web view and Article view. Web View includes all links/images of the original page, but it’s very reliable. Article view suppose to strip unrelated information, but often corrupts the content. I prefer to use offline Web view.
InstAPaper should also support offline Web view, in case if stripped view removes important part of content.

2.  Black full screen Saving on iPad Safari is very annoying. After user pressed a bookmark, the saving has some delay and then for a few seconds prevents from reading the text.Would be better to show as message on the top part(as in Pocket ). I am surprised, that  a full screen popup was  implemented recently as a desired feature.

3.There are no comments allowed on http://blog.instapaper.com/. I would prefer to post some of these notes as comments on http://blog.instapaper.com/ rather than write them in my blog and then send link to Marco.(I found recommendation how to add support of comments on tumblr at http://www.tumblr.com/help, but then realized that Marko was the lead developer ofTumblr.)

4. Also there is no support forum. I understand that maintenance of the forum ican be a hassle, but stackexchange fSome time ago I’ve described the issues that I’ve had since a new version of Read It Later, named Pocket, was introduced.
I’ve waited with hope for a new upgrade, but I had a huge disappointment with the latest version 16 June 2012. It didn’t fixed any of the two major problems, that I  experienced since new Pocket was introduced-
orums can be referred on  http://www.instapaper.com/main/support page, i.e.
http://webapps.stackexchange.com/search?q=Instapaper  or http://apple.stackexchange.com/search?q=Instapaper

5. Tags are more convenient than folders. i.e. an ability for the same article to have more than one tag. Also creating of new folders is not supported offline, which is an annoying limitation.

6. I would like to have a narrow list - additionally to existing list modes have a subject only list or subject+site list to show more list items on a screen.
7. Limit of 500 offline articles sounds quite big, but my RIL list exceeded 1000, so it could be a issue in the future.
8. Search button on iPad version is visible, but doesn’t work- it forces to buy Premium subscription. I think, that it’s not correct. If the button in a paid version is visible and enabled, it should  provide  a working functionality, e.g. search in article names only. And leave full-text search for the premium support.
9..Copy URL is an important operation and deserves to be in a first level of Action menu, rather than in Share sub-menu.


I’ve also have comment re post http://www.marco.org/2011/04/28/removed-instapaper-free. Marco Arment  explained, why he doesn’t provide free version of Instapaper.  I believe that he is loosing essential part of his customers. When I decided which of iPad application to choose, I’ve selected RIL, because I was able to play with free version, and I liked it. I didn’t have a chance to compare RIL and InstAPaper on iPad, so I’ve bought  RIL pro. For a user there is no point to pay even $3 , if there are similar free product, that user can try and see, is it suitable for him/her.


I’ve also played with Readability. It doesn’t have folders or tags(which is very important for me), but nicely supports full text search
posted @ Sunday, June 24, 2012 9:54 PM
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