When Instagram first came out on the iPhone in 2010, it was a trailblazer. The elegantly-designed app let iPhone users capture and format Web content for offline consumption. Meanwhile Android users were left in the dark—until now, two years later. Was it worth the wait? Instapaper for Android ($2.99) offers a smooth, elegant interface, but like so many iOS cult favorites that port to Android (Instagram, Temple Run), it’s not as feature-rich as existing Android alternatives. Pocket (Free, 4 stars) and InstaFetch (free) do more, and they are free.
But if you’ve been using Instapaper on an iOS device for awhile, it may be worth adding Android support so you can synch across platforms.
How to Clip Articles
Start by creating an account with your email address and user name; you’ll need this login information to access your Instapaper from other platforms.
Now you’re ready to start saving Web content to consume offline. There are a few ways you can add content to Instagram. The easiest is probably from a desktop browser (Chrome, Firefox, IE), which requires you to drag a “Read Later” bookmarklet into your bookmarks toolbar. As you surf simply click the bookmarklet to immediately save content to your archive.
The Android app automatically adds Instapaper to your list of sharing options within your mobile browser, email, social networks, Google Play, and hundreds of other sources of Web content. You can also email links to a personal Read Later email address.
Instapaper strips URLs down to basic text and images, although dynamic images (PHP scripts) like those on Facebook or news homepages, appear as broken links. When you save a YouTube video, the URL only saves text. Pocket supports dynamic images, though you can only stream a saved video when you’re connected to the Internet.
Like its competitors, Instagram lets you customize the appearance of your clipped articles. You can adjust fonts, font sizes, margins, backlighting, etc. I see this as more of a “nice to have” feature than a necessity.
One thing this app really needs is pagination for reading long texts, as well as the ability to search within texts.
When Instagram first launched on iOS in 2010, Instagram founder Marco Arment famously swore he’d never create an Android version so he could focus instead on iOS support. Arment farmed out Android development to Mobelux, the folks behind Tumblr for iPhone and Android.
I’ve tried and really liked the iPhone version, which also syncs with your social networks. I don’t feel that pull on Android. There are just too many other free, better-performing rivals on Android, namely Pocket and InstaFetch. If you’re looking for a full-fledged organizational app that not only saves Web content for offline reading, but stores documents, checklists, and more, check out Evernote, an Editors’ Choice pick for note-taking apps.
Article source: http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2405748,00.asp