On the read later experience in Pocket and Readwise

Om Malik on how the experience in Pocket has declined and his thoughts on Readwise Reader:

To me, Pocket has always been a repository where I save, store, and archive articles I want to read or use for my ongoing research. That’s its value for me. I don’t care much for their “Home Screen” and its recommendations. While it may seem minor, these changes detract from the app’s core purpose, revealing a user-hostile behavior. The changes implemented by Mozilla and Pocket prioritize their interests and haven’t notably improved my user experience.

Readwise initially offered a service for saving highlights from various sources — Apple Books, Pocket, Amazon Kindle, Twitter, and even Discord. I appreciated their approach. Then they launched Reader, their own “read-it-later” app. It lets me save articles, highlight text, add notes, enable public links, save YouTube videos (with text captions), and offers other features. Both Readwise and its competitor, Matter, prioritize enhancing the online reading experience. Meanwhile, Pocket seems to be deciding for me what I need.

I switched from Pocket to Readwise Reader when it was in early beta and I couldn’t agree more with Om’s assessment. Reader feels like it is built from the ground up to just give me a better experience for getting articles into my inbox, working with them, and getting useful information out of them into other tools. Pocket feels more like it wants to keep me within Pocket.

Ian Betteridge @ianbetteridge