A list of iPad reading apps covering books, magazines, newspapers and articles.
The iPad is a great alternative to a dedicated e-reader like the Kindle or Nook. Although it doesn’t have the same e-ink technology, and reading from a backlit screen can get tiring after a while, it’s a helpful way of being able to work, play, and travel light. Whether you prefer reading non-fiction, novels, magazines, newspapers, or articles, here is a list of six iPad reading apps that will help you dive in.
Kindle - Free
The Kindle app for iPad gives you the ability to read Kindle books, magazines, newspapers, textbooks and PDFs on your iPad. Using Amazon Whispersync, you can automatically sync texts between your Amazon account and the iPad app. In addition, Whispersync also syncs your last page read, bookmarks, notes, and highlights across multiple devices, so you can start reading a book on your iPad, then pick up where you left off on Kindle or the iPhone app. The Kindle Store has an excellent selection of books, including free titles, and the app comes with a built-in dictionary and in-text search function.
Stanza – Free
Stanza is one of the most flexible iPad reading apps available. It enables you to read texts in a variety of formats, and you can use it with desktop programs like Calibre, to help you manage your digital libraries and convert files into a different format. Stanza enables you to organize your iPad library, download books directly from sources like Project Gutenberg and Feedbooks, and choose from over 50,000 books to purchase from partner stores.
Instapaper – $2.99
Instapaper is a helpful tool for those times when you stumble across an interesting blog post or article, but don’t have time to read it. Using the Instapaper bookmarklet, you can save the page to your Instapaper account to read later through your desktop, iPad or iPhone.
As well as web browsers, sending to Instapaper is supported by over 150 other apps, and Instapaper takes off all adverts, banners and page clutter, giving you a distraction-free reading experience. Once you’ve saved a page to your account, all articles are available offline, so you can catch-up on your day’s reading even if you don’t have an internet connection.
Nook – Free
The Barnes & Noble Nook is a direct Kindle competitor in the US, and this app gives iPad users direct access to the Nook ebook catalogue. Like Amazon’s Kindle app, you can download books, newspapers, magazine subscriptions, and free book samples. You also get the ability to sync between devices, highlight passages, search text, use the built-in dictionary, and add notes and bookmarks. Nook is the Kindle app for people who don’t like Kindles.
iBooks – Free
iBooks is a free app that is pre-installed on every iPad. It’s a useful tool that allows you to download texts directly from the iBookstore, organize your collection, and add notes and highlights to the text. As well as standard text-based books, the iBookstore also offers books containing audio, video and animation. You can sync texts, last page read, notes and highlights between the iBooks apps on your iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch, and switch to night-time mode for easier reading in dim light.
One of iBooks’ most useful features is its integration with Mail and Safari, which enables you to open and save PDFs in iBooks directly from the message or web page.
Readability – Free
Readability is a useful little app that does what it says on the tin, and makes web pages more readable. Using Readability, you can get rid of sidebars, adverts and banners on web pages, leaving only a single column of text and images relevant to the article you’re reading. The app also comes with a similar function to Instapaper, that allows you to save articles to read later. Sync your reading lists between your browser and device, and share your favorite posts and articles with friends via Facebook or Twitter.