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Nearly three months after being acquired by Pinterest, Instapaper is making some changes that will impact its users. Starting today, the online bookmarking service has discontinued its premium offering and opened up the paid features to everyone.
Users will now have access to features such as full-text search for all articles, unlimited notes and speed reading, text-to-speech playlists, an ad-free Instapaper website, Kindle Digests of up to 50 articles, and the ability to send articles to Kindle through a bookmarklet or mobile app. These were previously only available if you paid $3 per month or $30 per year.
Pinterest purchased the service created by Tumblr cofounder Marco Arment in August with the promise that it would remain operational as an independent app. The premium service was started in 2014 as a means to support the development of Instapaper, but now that it’s no longer a startup, there’s no need for a paid model to exist.
Instapaper competed against the likes of Pocket, Flipboard, Evernote (at one point), and Readability. With a “Read Later” bookmarklet, users could select any webpage and have it saved to Instapaper to read later across any device. The service is available on iOS, Android, and Kindle devices.
It’s likely that making the premium features available free for everyone could spark an uptick in usage, giving the Pinterest-owned company additional data for any experiments or product they’re developing.
Those who currently have paid subscriptions will receive a prorated refund in the coming weeks.
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