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Read-Later App Instapaper Gets Redesign; Switches to Freemium Model

Read-Later App Instapaper Gets Redesign; Switches to Freemium Model

Facing tough competition from apps such as Pocket, read-later app Instapaper now has a fresh look and has gone free. Its iOS app, which used to cost Rs. 190 to Rs. 250 and had an in-app monthly subscription option for Rs. 60, is now available on the App Store for free.

Betaworks, the company that owns Instapaper, announced that the new business model will allow users to buy unlimited access to several features for a fee. On the India App Store, Instapaper users can now pay Rs. 750 per year or Rs. 190 for three months for unlimited highlights, full-text search and text-to-speech playlists.

Instapaper 6 has been updated for iOS 8, which means that you can now save articles directly from Safari. This is an improvement over the previous version, where one had to copy links and paste them in Instapaper or email it to their queue to save articles. That was a limitation imposed by iOS. The new version also has a notification centre widget that shows you articles you've saved today.

Apart from iOS 8 features, Instapaper 6 adds text-to-speech support. This means that you can now listen to articles saved in Instapaper if you don't have the time to read them. To create playlists for these articles, you will have to buy the in-app subscription.

The app has also improved its Browse section, where you can now find new articles from editors, algorithms and your friends in one feed. The app has introduced profiles for users too. You can also view your friends' profiles from articles they've liked in the Browse section.

Betaworks General Manager Brian Donohue told Techcrunch that since the company acquired the app in 2013, it has been planning to go freemium. Donohue told Techcrunch that since Pocket launched a "great, free product, it became harder to justify a paid product when we had a solid free competitor."

Instapaper is also available on Android and the Web.

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Further reading: iOS 8, Apple, Instapaper, iOS
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