Mobelux releases new Instapaper app for Android

A Richmond company has released the Android versions of Instapaper, a popular online reading app. The well known “read later” service was previously only available to iPhone and iPad users. Find out how the connections between Mobelux and Instapaper go beyond the new apps.

Richmond’s Mobelux has released new apps for Instapaper, an online service that allows users to easily collect and save web content for later reading. The apps premiered late last night and are available on Android, Kindle, and Nook devices.

The connection between Mobelux and Instapaper goes beyond the newly released apps, through, of all things, Tumblr. Mobelux created an iPhone app called Tumblrette, which was acquired in 2009 by Tumblr and later re-released as the official Tumblr app. Instapaper’s creator, Marco Arment, co-founded Tumblr1 in 2007, remaining with the micro-blogging company until he left in 2010 to work on Instapaper full-time.

Instapaper allows users, with the click of a button, to easily save web content in a simplified, easy-to-read, text-only format to their Instapaper account. That user can then read the content at a later time using Instapaper’s website or one of its mobile apps. It’s like a DVR but for reading. “You come across substantial news or blog articles that you want to read, but don’t have time at the moment,” wrote Arment in 2008 about the role of Instapaper. “You need something to read while sitting on a bus, waiting in a line, or bored in front of a computer.”

It’s estimated that Instapaper has approximately 2 million registered users. That number will likely spike now that Instapaper is available to millions of Android users.

Instapaper is one of several “read later” services currently available (Readability, Pocket, and even Apple are its main competitors). While many laud these services, some are worried by them. When a user saves a webpage or article with one of these services they strip away any formatting–advertisements included–leaving uncluttered, readable text. While good for some users, losing ad impressions is a problem for some publishers. However, that doesn’t seem to dissuade people from using Instapaper.


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  1. Tumblr opened a Richmond office in 2011. 
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