SymPaper for Symbian – Read it later client review

SymPaper is Symbian’s only Read it later client, or at least the only that I know of. It is a paid app and this review is meant to help you make this decision: is it worth it?

It all depends on how often you use Read it later/Pocket on your Symbian device. But first of all, let’s see what Read it later is all about. Well, let’s say you encounter a nice little article that you want to read but don’t have the time to do it. Usually you just bookmark it and come back later to read it. But what it you can’t find that article anymore? What if it was removed, or something else happened and you just can’t read it anymore? Here is where Read it later/Pocket comes in handy. When you add a page to Read it later it’s not like you’re just bookmarking it. Read it later will download that page and will keep it’s content in your account until you decide to delete it. So even if that article that you were interested in is no longer online, you can always read it with Read it later.

Next question I hear is “what apps use Read it later?”. Tough question. Unfortunately not too many. It would be great if the Belle browser used it, but Nokia did not integrate such functionality in it. The main social applications, however, do support Read it later. Gravity is my choice when it comes to Twitter and fMobi when it comes to Facebook, and both support Read it later. I have to note here that Gravity too has a Facebook client and Foursquare client with Read it later support.

But the advantages do not stop here. You can have these pages across all your devices, be them Windows Phone, Symbian, iOS, Android or desktop computers, and that my friends is the power of Read it later. You see an article on your phone, you send it to Read it later and later when you’re at home, you get your tablet and you read.

The application main view consists in the list of articles that you have added to your account. From the context menu you can choose to see All articles, Read articles or Unread articles like a filter.

Using the “plus” button you can add an article by specifying it’s URL and optionally it’s title.

The article view is very simple and offers you a simple toolbar with the ability to mark the article as read or share it. You can share the article by SMS, Email, Twitter or Facebook. From the context menu you can delete the article, re-sync it which means the app will try to re-fetch the original URL of that article or open it in browser.

In the settings there are lots of tweaks that can be used to customize your SymPaper experience and data usage. First you have the Fetch mode where you can decide if the articles you already read should be fetched from the Read it later server or not. Second you have the number of articles to be fetched. By default this number is set to 500. You wouldn’t want to download a whole bunch of ancient articles, right? Next you have the search mode that decides how you want to search for your articles. Here you have two options: search in title or in article content. I suggest you use the title search and only if you can’t find what you need switch to content search as this may be an exhaustive search. Next option is Auto Sync At Startup which synchronizes with your Read it later account each time you run SymPaper.

The article settings section is all about the reading experience, so here you can tweak that. First of all we have the font size and here you can choose from four predefined sizes, which should be enough for anyone regardless of their screen size. Next we have the theming or skin options. The Light list theme and Light reader theme will instruct SymPaper to use white background an black text color within the items list and article reader. While that may be OK for non AMOLED screens, I strongly recommend you keep using the dark theme on AMOLED displays. The Images option decides if your article reader displays images or not and the maximized reader option removes the system status bar from the same article reader. The Automatically Mark As Read option will mark an article as read once you’ve opened it.

I have to say that SymPaper may be Symbian’s single Read it later client, but it’s basically all you need. It’s written by the same Talv Bansal that wrote SymNote I reviewed last week.

The app is paid and you can get it from here: Download

Java senior developer, Nokia enthusiast, amateur blogger at TechMobility and NokiaTips. My Motto is: Your rise, you fall, you’re down then you rise again. What don’t kill ya makes ya more strong

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