Read-it-later app Pocket has announced a few new features coming to the iOS and Android versions of the app today, including an updated text-to-speech ability and a new design.
After updating to Pocket 7.0, users will be able to listen to text-based articles that they've saved in their Pocket list more easily. With the "Listen" feature, articles can be saved into Pocket from around the internet, opened in the app, and played in their entirety through text-to-speech. The updated feature is now more easily accessed through a dedicated headphone icon right on the Pocket main screen.
Pocket's Listen feature is now also more human sounding thanks to Amazon Polly, a cloud service that can convert text into lifelike speech. Because of this, Pocket says that Listen is not limited to any specific publishers or articles, but can be applied to any text articles viewed inside of the Pocket app.
Your Pocket list just became your own personal podcast, curated by you. Our new listen feature frees the content you’ve saved to fit into your busy life. It enables you to absorb articles whenever and wherever, whether you are driving, or walking, working out, cooking, or on the train.
The new update also brings a fresh design to Pocket, which the company says is tailored to ensure that readers can focus on their saved articles. There's a new and cleaner article view right when the app is opened, a new app-wide dark theme and sepia theme, and updated fonts and typography so reading is more comfortable overall.
Earlier in the year, Pocket introduced time estimates for articles and videos into the iOS app, allowing users to see exactly how long it will take them to read each piece of content. The new additions to the app follow Mozilla's acquisition of Pocket in February 2017.