Reasons why you should use the Pocket app to read your articles

Pocket is no stranger to some of us. I’m tempted to say “most of us”, but that might be a terrible assumption.

From the start, yours truly loves his long reads. I’m an inquisitive mind and with that understanding of me, Pocket is, out of the box, the kind of app or service I’d have in my lap anytime, anytime. I say app/service because until recently I only used the service – in my inbox and on my web browser. But, for everyone (recently including myself), there’s a very well-designed mobile app on top of the browser extensions that I’ve survived on for a long time – unless you’re using Pocket’s makers Mozilla’s browser Firefox, which has the service built-in), there is a nice mobile app that you can find on the Play Store.

So what exactly is Pocket? That’s a lot of things for a lot of people. It can be a brilliant content discovery platform. Or a very handy content bookmarking service… Through the three reasons stated below, you will come to your own conclusion on what exactly it is because for you it is all those things listed below.

1. Content

Pocket as a service may be many things to many people, but to me it is first and foremost a content discovery platform. I started using Pocket – through the mobile app and desktop browser extensions – many years ago for a different purpose. However, as the years have passed and discovering quality content in the information overload we all suffer from these days has become a chore, I have embraced it to discover great content that I not only read but that I also agree – you should have come across a great deal if you interact with me on social media platforms.

Content discovery comes in many forms. E-mail summaries are sent daily and weekly, depending on individual preferences. One can also simply discover content on the Pocket website (make sure you are logged in) or on the app. More recently, there’s also something the folks behind Pocket call “Collections.” Essentially, they are interesting pieces of content placed under one roof to make them easier to find instead of getting one article here and another there.

More importantly, these pieces of content may make the most sense to many more people because not only are they grouped by interest – say you’re into personal finance articles, for example – but they’re also localized.

“The Pocket Collections are designed to be compelling playlists handpicked by experts and thought leaders that go beyond what you might find in algorithmic recommendations or basic search results,” explains Mozilla.

A good example of localization efforts in Collections is the recent partnership between Mozilla, the Pocket service and app developers, and the Aga Khan University to showcase what they call East African collections. It is rich in content from across the region and beyond that has been deemed relevant to readers in the region with topics ranging from travel to technology self-improvement and many more. And, it’s not just articles, we also found podcasts!

2. Read-Later Service

This is perhaps Pocket’s best-known feature and use case. That’s why I started using Pocket in college. I was on the World Wide Web, jumping from site to site as usual, and came across something interesting (mostly an article) that I didn’t have time to read at that time as I was rushing from class to class. another or beat a class award deadline. So what would I do? Bookmark it to read later. It saved me a lot.

For those who are not in such a scenario as a student or someone in the office, this should be useful for things you want to refer to later, maybe share with someone else, more later and, as we will see in the next point, maybe even better reading than wherever the content is currently hosted!

Using Pocket to save articles to read later is easy on both mobile (using the app) and desktop web browser (using extensions). On Android devices, just make sure the app is installed and it will always appear in the Universal Sharing menu. When you read something yourself in a browser, you simply share it and voila!

3. Distraction-free reading – and data savings!

The World Wide Web is full of distractions. Sometimes at the end of a long day you just want to enjoy reading that news. Wired article that just popped up on your Twitter feed while you were leaving home for work, and you don’t want to be reminded to spend like $5 on a subscription or another VPN app. And, I’m being generous, things are usually worse.

On desktop browsers, many of us figured things out – we installed ad-blocking extensions and so on. On mobile browsers, things aren’t exactly rosy given the obvious limitations of browser apps on mobile. Samsung’s most popular browsers don’t support extensions — and those are barely there, anyway. So now what? Well, there’s always the option of blocking ads using private DNS or blocking ads at the network level, for those familiar with that sort of thing. But, in a random sample of about 10 web article readers, it’s unlikely to be anyone. Most people will just browse the Play Store for an ad blocker and how effective these are if a device hasn’t been tampered with (remember Android rooting?) so that apps get system-level access (something that’s not only totally useless in 2022 but also a big security risk) is still something I can’t vouch for anyone.

So now where are you going? Well, pocket it! Use Pocket to read your articles without distraction. No ads, no unnecessary clutter, nothing… As a bonus, you get familiar formatting for all your content instead of being at the mercy of whoever is responsible for optimizing the experience on any site where you get your items.

Another big benefit of stripping content of unnecessary elements in an effort to improve the reading experience is reduced data consumption. Yes, all those elements on a website, including this one, that are loaded before you can read an article are fetched from somewhere – a remote server. This consumes your valuable data packets. The less recovery that needs to be done, the less data is consumed.

Plus, Pocket downloads content to your mobile app for later playback, if possible, over Wi-Fi to further minimize data consumption.

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