Offline reading: Reading List or Instapaper

I’m going on a day-long long journey around the world to !Mexico this coming Friday.

I want to catch up some reading, but I don’t have access to internet. Should I rely on Reading List or Instapaper for reading offline?

I pay for Pocket Premium (I’m grandfathered in at a lower rate than the current $45/yr) because Pocket Premium will save the actual article offline, so that it can still be read if it is removed or put behind a paywall (something neither Instapaper nor Reading List does), and it gives me full text search and unlimited highlights, and has great tagging w/ suggestions. (And it’s got something of a social aspect to it, where you can recommend/share articles and follow people to see what they recommend/share.) It also has a Mac app you can use to sync and read everything saved - I sometimes print-to-pdf the resulting ad-free, reformatted articles. When you open the Pocket mobile app and it detects a web page on the clipboard, it’ll automatically suggest you add that link to your reading list - as far as I know there’s no equivalent in Instapaper.


Instapaper supports offline reading and will ask if it should save an article if it detects a URL in your clipboard.

Reading list supposedly saves for offline. I have found it to be unreliable for that.

I go with Instapaper because I prefer the design. Less cluttered than Pocket. But honestly they are both good choices and I bounce between the two.

If you like tags, Pocket is the one. Instapaper supports folders instead.


I’m already deep in Instapaper and a subscriber as well. But thanks Bowline :blush:

Alright, so if I save a bunch of articles to Instapaper today then they should all be available offline? I have a LOT of articles in Instapaper.

I used to use Instapaper until they cancelled my account as I access frequently from Europe where Instapaper is afraid of GDPR regulations by the EU. Now use Pocket and quite happy.

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That’s right. However I’d recommend to open the Instapaper app and check that all have been downloaded and sync’d.

For a couple of times I’ve added a bunch of articles but didn’t go through this step and when on a plane they weren’t available.

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you can easily check this, put the device in airplane mode and see if they are there.

The last two times I tried this with Instapaper, on flights also, all the latest articles I’d added had not been synced to my iPad. I chose them especially for the flights and was rather annoyed, so make sure you check before going offline.

Since that happened I dropped Instapaper, I now use Keep It for this purpose and I have not had any similar issues.

I believe that issue has been resolved, " Additionally, today we are bringing back Instapaper to European Union users. Over the past two months we have taken a number of actions to address the General Data Protection Regulation, and we are happy to announce our return to the European Union.

We are very sorry for the extended downtime and, as a token of our apology, we are giving six months of Instapaper Premium to all EU users affected by the outage."

Interesting they’ve not bothered to invite me back. As I lost more than 6 months due to them dropping me, it will take more than that! :slight_smile: