I read a lot, a heck lot actually. Be it quora, wikipedia or some random article on a blog. But the problem with reading on the web is the distraction that comes with it. You are constantly bugged by some image on a sidebar or that annoying ad on the top of the article. But worry no more, because I’ve just found a great way of reading web articles, by stripping them down just to the core: the central text.
Readability is a simple add-on for browsers designed to create a distraction free reading mode. It’s a very simple, yet exceptionally useful. All you need to do is, head over to their website, sign up for an account, and add a plugin to your browser. Once it is added, just surf the net like you usually do and click the button whenever you find a web page that you want formatted in a clean, readable fashion. And then, read away.
Readability is very customizable, offering the ability to change the font type and size as well as the column width of the text within the page. You can also change the background color to simulate a night mode, perfect for late night reading.
It also maintains a reading list, categorizing articles that you haven’t read, and archiving the ones you have. You can also tag articles which adds another realm to categorizing, you can then sort articles by your tags.
Sadly, but not surprisingly, there’s no windows phone app. So, I can’t catch up to my reading on a my phone but Android and iOS users, as always, can. I hate you guys.
I must’ve been feeling pretty sleepy when I first wrote this because just a little googling resulted in a few unofficial readability clients for Windows Phone. I tested atleast three of them, and none has everything that you’d expect from a readability app but one of them stands out as it comes with offline cache support, so you can read even when you are disconnected, that’s exactly what I need.
You can download Now Readable and wish that the developer adds some more features like font size, background color, and most importantly - landscape mode support.
Turns out, Now Readable’s sync feature has a few bugs due to which I was not able to sync my reading list. I was not going to sit quiet about it, So I contacted its developer @chustar and he hopes to fix the bug and release an update. Yay!
Update 3: 5th October 2013
An update just rolled out for Now Readable which fixes the sync bug. I’ve checked it myself and it works smoothly. Also, last time I checked @chustar was working on a “settings” page for the app. It’ll be fun.