Marco Arment Previews Instapaper Pro for iPad, Discusses Development Quandary Ahead of Device's Launch

094738 instapaper ipad 1

Developer Marco Arment yesterday announced that his popular Instapaper service for saving Web content for later reading will be coming to the iPad, hopefully in time for the device's launch on April 3rd. The service, which currently offers a pair of iPhone/iPod touch applications including the limited Instapaper Free and the more powerful Instapaper Pro ($4.99), downloads text-only versions of Web content and saves them to a user's free account for later reading on a variety of devices.

In his blog entry, Arment offers some preview screenshots and discusses his motivations for developing iPad-specific versions of Instapaper. (Instapaper Pro will be a universal application for both iPhone and iPad, requiring users to only purchase the application once.)

Once I nailed down a few definite iPad-friendly features, I realized that I could port all of them to the iPhone version of Instapaper Pro. And if I did that, all of my customers (and I) could use these great new features now.

So, rather than rewriting my entire interface for the iPad over the two months that we've had, I spent the first few weeks finishing and launching the 2.2 update to my iPhone app, a major undertaking that added a lot of great features, using techniques that would allow me to easily adapt all of the features to the iPad. And I spent the remaining time adapting my interfaces, rewriting or modifying where necessary, for this new platform.

Arment also discusses the quandary faced by the many iPhone developers who are looking to move their apps to the iPad but have not had access to an actual device for testing. Consequently, developers have to either trust the iPad simulator in the iPhone SDK 3.2 and Apple's reviewers in order to have their applications ready for the iPad launch or hold off until the device comes available and have customers make do with iPhone versions of their applications for several weeks or months until iPad versions can be created.

094738 instapaper ipad 2 300

For Arment, seeing the pixel-doubled display of the iPhone version of Instapaper Pro in the iPad simulator was enough to convince him that he needed to have an iPad version of the app ready to go as soon as possible.

It sucked, and it was completely unusable by my standards. I don't think I'll want to run any pixel-doubled apps on my iPad in practice.

As far as I'm concerned, Instapaper isn't really available on the iPad until it's native. (This also influenced my decision to make it a universal iPhone/iPad app: I don't want anyone subjecting themselves to the iPhone edition in pixel-doubled mode.)

As a result of this decision, Arment is prepared to accept that a few minor issues may exist with the iPad version of Instapaper Pro and that he can fix them soon after the device launches. But that risk is outweighed in Arment's mind by the opportunity to have an iPad-specific Instapaper experience from day one.

Popular Stories

iPhone 14 Mock pill and hole thumb

ProMotion Now Expected to Remain Exclusive to iPhone 14 Pro Models, Not Expand to Entire Lineup

Sunday January 16, 2022 8:56 am PST by
Continuing the tradition set with the iPhone 13 Pro, only the highest-end iPhone 14 models will feature Apple's ProMotion display technology, according to a respected display analyst. Ross Young, who on multiple occasions has detailed accurate information about Apple's future products, said in a tweet that ProMotion will not be expanded to the entire iPhone 14 lineup and will remain...
AirPods Pro Gen 3 Mock Feature Red

AirPods Pro 2 Could Start a New Accessory Ecosystem

Friday January 14, 2022 2:34 am PST by
Apple's second-generation AirPods Pro could arrive alongside a new series of accessories, recent leaked images suggest. Alleged leaked photos of the next-generation AirPods Pro obtained by MacRumors showed a charging case with a metal loop on the side for attaching a strap. Apple has not used this design for any of its other AirPod models and it is unclear why it would be added in this...
Unlikely Products 2022 Feature

Six Rumored Apple Products You're Unlikely to See This Year

Saturday January 15, 2022 2:06 pm PST by
Much has been said about what consumers could see from Apple in 2022, but the company is also working on a handful of rumored products that aren't expected to be unveiled for at least another 12 months, and in some cases a lot longer. Of course, that's assuming they get released at all. Apple works on many potential products some of which ultimately never see the light of day. With that in...
safari icon blue banner

Safari Bug Allows Websites to Track Your Recent Browsing Activity in Real Time

Sunday January 16, 2022 3:37 pm PST by
A bug in WebKit's implementation of a JavaScript API called IndexedDB can reveal your recent browsing history and even your identity, according to a blog post shared on Friday by browser fingerprinting service FingerprintJS. In a nutshell, the bug allows any website that uses IndexedDB to access the names of IndexedDB databases generated by other websites during a user's browsing session....
ipad air 4 video

New iPad Air Rumored to Launch This Spring With A15 Chip, 5G, Center Stage Camera, and More

Saturday January 15, 2022 8:05 pm PST by
Apple is planning to release a fifth-generation iPad Air with similar features as the sixth-generation iPad mini, including an A15 Bionic chip, 12-megapixel Ultra Wide front camera with Center Stage support, 5G for cellular models, and Quad-LED True Tone flash, according to Japanese blog Mac Otakara. Citing reliables sources in China, the report claims that the new iPad Air could be...
netflix2

Netflix Again Raises Prices for All Plans, 4K Streaming Now $20 Per Month

Friday January 14, 2022 12:46 pm PST by
Netflix today updated the prices for its streaming plans, and all of its offerings are now more expensive. The Basic plan is now priced at $9.99 per month, the Standard plan is priced at $15.49 per month, and the Premium plan is priced at $19.99 per month. The Basic plan is $1 more expensive, up from $8.99 per month. This plan allows users to watch on just one screen at a time, and it limits ...
top stories 20220115

Top Stories: iPhone 14 Pro Rumors, iCloud Private Relay Controversy, iOS 15.2.1 Released, and More

Saturday January 15, 2022 6:00 am PST by
Hole-punch? Pill? Hole-punch and pill? Rumors about what the front camera system on the iPhone 14 Pro will look like are evolving rapidly, and it now appears we might be getting a novel but potentially controversial design later this year. Other major stories this week included some confusion and controversy about iCloud Private Relay being disabled for some T-Mobile customers, increasing...
iPhone 14 Mock pill and hole 16x9 120hz

Analyst: All iPhone 14 Models to Feature 120Hz Displays, 6GB of RAM, and More

Friday January 14, 2022 7:02 am PST by
Apple is rumored to announce four new iPhone 14 models in September, and ahead of time, analyst Jeff Pu has outlined his expectations for the devices. In a research note with Haitong International Securities, obtained by MacRumors, Pu claimed that all iPhone 14 models will feature ProMotion displays, compared to only Pro models currently. ProMotion enables a variable refresh rate up to 120Hz ...