Readability, a service akin to Marco Arment’s Instapaper which turns any web page into a clean and comfortable reading view, announced in a blog post today plans to ease the paid subscription requirement in order to make it more useful and free for everyone. In addition, they also teased the upcoming new iPhone and iPad apps here (the submissions are awaiting approval from Apple).
A paid subscription is still available to those wishing to access beyond the most recent articles in their Reading Lis, including the ability to access daily digest of the Reading List on the Amazon Kindle. The company noted:
With this release, Readability is available at no cost. Sign-up and you’ll have your own profile and reading list in no time. Both Readability accounts and our companion apps will always be completely free, but we also offer a premium experience for users who want additional features and an easy way to support their favorite writers and publishers.
Eagled-eyed readers would know that Readability has been around for a while now. Indeed, reading aficionados have been enjoying functionality provided by Readability on a daily basis, yours truly included. In its most basic, free of charge offering, clicking the Readability bookmarklet in your browser strips away heavy graphics, adverts and other layout elements on web pages, leaving only the text portion and hyperlinks, which is all that matters anyway. You can also save optimized articles for later with automatic syncing across devices and send an article to your Kindle.
Another great thing: Readability is supported across dozens of popular desktop and mobile apps through the official API, including Reeder for iOS and Mac, Twitter clients Echofon, Ubersoscial and Tweetbot and many more.
Charging customers for advanced features, such as saving an article for offline reading, had allowed Readability to take off initially as the company woed support from big media. Readability still shares 70 percent of the proceeds with publishers of the articles accessed via the service. Apple, of course, in iOS 5 introduced a similar feature in Safari called Reader, also with the ability to save articles for later and sync your reading list across Macs, PCs and iOS devices via iCloud. Readability is available on Amazon’s Kindle, as an HTML5 web app on mobile devices at readability.com, on desktop via browser bookmarklets and extensions and is built into supported third-party apps for Mac OS X, Windows and mobile platforms.
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