Read It Later: Save Information To Be Read Later On Any Device

00 RIL Logo   Read It Later: Save Information To Be Read Later On Any DeviceWelcome to the era of information overload. We are bombarded by lots of information everyday and going through it one by one in real time is too hard for a normal human to handle. That’s why modern society invented tools to help them save the important information to be read later. Examples of such tools include¬†Instapaper and the Scrapbook Firefox extension (discussed here and here).

If you are still struggling to work out which “read it later” tool fits your personality, maybe you should try “Read It Later“. It’s one of the pioneers in the field, and it has expanded its service to support the multi-platform environment that we live with today.

Start Building Your Reading List

We have covered Read It Later in the past here and here.  However, the service has been greatly improved since then. So why choose it? Some of the advantages that Read It Later offers to its users over similar services are:

  • the ability to add and read saved information from almost any devices available on the market by using the web interface, native apps, or any other apps that support the Read It Later environment.
  • the ability to save information for offline reading, so you can continue reading your saved information even if your device is in airplane mode.
  • the ability to synchronize the reading progress so you can continue reading on another device and pick up where you left off.

Before you can use the service, you need to go through the signing up routine.

01a SignUp   Read It Later: Save Information To Be Read Later On Any Device

You can sign up via the web interface, Firefox extension, or iPhone/iPod apps.

01b RIL Skip SignUp   Read It Later: Save Information To Be Read Later On Any Device

Then the first thing you need to do after signing up is to build your reading list.

02a RIL Empty reading list   Read It Later: Save Information To Be Read Later On Any Device

The easiest way to build your list is by adding the “Read It Later” bookmarklet to your browser’s bookmark bar. This bookmarklet should be compatible with every modern browser available today (including Mobile Safari – although the process is not as straightforward as a computer’s browser).

02b RIL Add Bookmarklet   Read It Later: Save Information To Be Read Later On Any Device

Then all you have to do is browse the net like you normally do, and every time you find something that you want to save for later, click the bookmarklet and the article will be saved.

02d RIL Page Saved   Read It Later: Save Information To Be Read Later On Any Device

You can also add the Read It Later bookmarklet to your mobile phone browser. I only have access to an iPhone so I’ll give an example using iPhone’s Mobile Safari.

To add the bookmarklet to Mobile Safari, tap the “Add” icon on the Read It Later app main page, then continue to “Mobile Safari” and “Install Read It Later Bookmarklet“. The app will guide you through the process.

07 Add Bookmarklet   Read It Later: Save Information To Be Read Later On Any Device

With the bookmarklet installed, you can add any article from the web by tapping the bookmark icon at the bottom of the page.

08b Bookmark Icon   Read It Later: Save Information To Be Read Later On Any Device

Then continue tapping the “Read It Later” bookmarklet, and the page will be saved to your reading list.

09b Bookmark Safari Mobile   Read It Later: Save Information To Be Read Later On Any Device

Reading Between The Gadgets

This is what the reading list on the browser looks like. On the right of every saved item you can see the option to read the text version of the article (“T“) and to mark the article as read (red check mark) You can filter the article using the search field (title, site, or tag), or you can sort them by categories (newest, oldest, title, site).

03a RIL Unread List   Read It Later: Save Information To Be Read Later On Any Device

The text version of the article is clean and comfortable to read. But if you prefer to read the original source, you can easily visit the site by clicking on the link.

3b RIL Read   Read It Later: Save Information To Be Read Later On Any Device

The small “Settings” button at the top of the pages give you options to change the background, size and type of font, margin, and alignment.

03c RIL Settings   Read It Later: Save Information To Be Read Later On Any Device

But what makes Read It Later shine is its ability to move seamlessly between gadgets. For example, if you were in the middle of an article that you read on your browser at home when you had to hit the road, you can continue reading on your iPhone on the way to the office. Read It Later’s iPhone App would pick up where you left off. Then if your commute was not long enough for you to finish the article, you could continue your reading at the office’s computer.

To continue your reading on your mobile app, tap the “Currently Reading” option on the front page of the app.

08a Continue Reading   Read It Later: Save Information To Be Read Later On Any Device

You’ll see the list of article(s) that you are currently reading. You can also see how much of the article you’ve read (in per cent).

09a Continue Reading   Read It Later: Save Information To Be Read Later On Any Device

Importing From Instapaper

If you are an Instapaper user and you want to move your saved articles from Instapaper To Read It Later, you can do so easily by visiting your Instapaper account main page and going to the lower part of the screen. Expand the “Export” menu and click “Download HTML file” to export all the articles to your hard drive.

04e Export from Instapaper   Read It Later: Save Information To Be Read Later On Any Device

Go to the¬†Import from Instapaper page, click “Choose File“, navigate to the exported file, then click the “Import” button.

04f RIL Import Articles   Read It Later: Save Information To Be Read Later On Any Device

Extension, App & More Apps

If you are a Firefox user, you can get more features by installing the Read It Later extension instead of using the bookmarklet. One of the features is the ability to download the articles for offline reading.

04a RIL Firefox Extension   Read It Later: Save Information To Be Read Later On Any Device

Similar privileges are also given for iOS users. You can download and install the official Read It Later app for your iPhone, iPod Touch, and/or iPad.

06a RIL iPhone 1   Read It Later: Save Information To Be Read Later On Any Device

As one of the oldest players in the business, Read It Later is supported by lots of third-party apps, including the ones for PC, Android, Blackberry, and even eBook readers.

06b RIL List Of Apps   Read It Later: Save Information To Be Read Later On Any Device

This vast support allows Read It Later users to easily build their reading list from almost any kind of source. With all of its advantages, I personally found that Read It Later is a solid alternative to help you manage information overload.

What do you think? Will you try Read It Later? Or do you prefer another method to save information for later reading? Please share your opinions using the comments below.

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9 Comments -

Will Radie

Read It Later is (and has been for some time) in my stable of trusted and most used apps.

The fact that it hooks into Google Reader and allows you to mark articles right from the Reader page (without even having to preview it) is KEY!

Another nice feature of the Firefox app is the ability to add a button to your status bar that will turn on “Click To Save” mode. When this is active, any link that is clicked will be added to the list.

Truly one of my favorite apps.. now if only I had the time to make a dent in my list.

Will Radie

Read It Later is (and has been for some time) in my stable of trusted and most used apps.

The fact that it hooks into Google Reader and allows you to mark articles right from the Reader page (without even having to preview it) is KEY!

Another nice feature of the Firefox app is the ability to add a button to your status bar that will turn on “Click To Save” mode. When this is active, any link that is clicked will be added to the list.

Truly one of my favorite apps.. now if only I had the time to make a dent in my list.

el tio ska

I also found Orbvious Interest (Chrome Extension) works well in Google Chrome (since RIL themselves don’t have an official Chrome extension). It ties into Google Reader nicely (liek the Firefox add-on does in FF) Here’s the link:
https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/bkikpncfbjndhfkipijhdoddiadaipaa

el tio ska

I also found Orbvious Interest (Chrome Extension) works well in Google Chrome (since RIL themselves don’t have an official Chrome extension). It ties into Google Reader nicely (liek the Firefox add-on does in FF) Here’s the link:
https://chrome.google.com/webs

Max Audet

Read it Later FTW!
Thanks el io ska for the Chrome extension suggestion.. Awesome Google Reader integration.
I use ChromeItLater (https://chrome.google.com/extensions/detail/ikajdinojambnjmdglchkjiklcmklalj) which has a nice one-click save to RIL..

Max Audet

Read it Later FTW!
Thanks el io ska for the Chrome extension suggestion.. Awesome Google Reader integration.
I use ChromeItLater (https://chrome.google.com/exte… which has a nice one-click save to RIL..

Killer

I use Android/Opera and find that the “To-Read Sites” extension works well for me. It’s much more simple than Read it Later, which I view as a good thing. Less time fiddling, more time reading…you just click to add the site, then go back to it later. It is instantly removed from the list once you have read it. If you want to save it long term, you can always bookmark it…

Aibek

Does it have a Chrome or Firefox version?

Tim

Interesting that the android apps for reading bookmarked pages don’t seem to work on lifehacker links. All I get when I sync the content is a page requesting that I log in (paperdroid) or a page asking me why I want to delete my account (BenPaper).