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iPhone app review: Instapaper

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Today we welcome Michelle Matthews, of Deck of Secrets fame, as our new iPhone app reviewer. She is a self-confessed iPhone junkie, with well over 250 apps on her iPhone, so she’s well qualified to provide you with the inside running.

iphone, instapaper, iphone apps, michelle matthewsCategory: Productivity

Price: Free or $5.99 for the pro version

Real world price: For less than the price of a pair of scissors and an in-tray you can have your own clipping service.

What does it do?

Instapaper is a place to collate articles you find on the web and don’t have time to read straight away or would like to save. Set up an account at www.instapaper.com with your email and password, move the ‘read later’ button to your web navigation bar and click it every time you’re open at a page you want to read later. Download the free or pro version of the app, sign in and press the sync button to access all your saved articles indefinitely.

Why go pro?

The free app is pretty damn good and you can easily get by with it. However, as Instapaper is a productivity app, you really want to squeeze every ounce of functionality from it, so pro is the way to go.

For a start it incorporates one of the niftiest functions on the iPhone – the accelerometer. Remember when it seemed cool to be able to scroll with the flick of a fingertip? That becomes a hassle once you’ve adapted to tilt scrolling. You tilt, it scrolls. Magic.

The Pro version also lets you organise your articles by setting up folders. It comes with ‘read later’ ‘archive’ and ‘starred’ for the articles you rate most highly. Friends who have the app can get access to your starred articles.

Font and font size can be easily adjusted up and down, text only or graphics versions can be selected on an article-by-article basis, and it remembers where you got to in each article and returns to the exact spot.

Instapaper has been in my top 10 apps as long as I’ve had my iPhone and stays there no matter how many new apps I download.

Michelle Matthews, deck of secretsMichelle Matthews is the founder of the Melbourne-based publishing company Deck of Secrets. In November 2008, the company launched its first iPhone app – DRINK. Melbourne. It now offers 10 apps, with more on the way. Michelle’s iPhone has all 11 app screens filled, with dozens more in iTunes.

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