The iPad is changing where and when we read

Read It Later
The rise of portable devices, such as the iPad, are shifting both where and when we read, according to Nate Weiner, developer of Read it Later.

His service, much like competitor Instapaper, allows consumers to bookmark an article and have the text downloaded to a mobile device for reading later, even offline.

Studying data culled from millions of stories saved and retrieved using his company’s smart phone and Web apps, Weiner reports that articles are saved at a fairly steady pace throughout the day.

Users accessing the service on their desktop computers time-shift their reading the least, showing slight peaks in the morning, noon and evening.

In comparison, users of the iPhone and iPad clearly tend toward nighttime reading. Owners of the iPad revealed the pattern most distinctly, with a fairly low level of daytime consumption, followed by a reading spike between 8 p.m. and 10 p.m.

Weiner writes that mobile phones and tablets are simply allowing people to consume content when it is most convenient for them:

“When a reader is given a choice about how to consume their content, a major shift in behavior occurs. They no longer consume the majority of their content during the day, on their computer.  Instead they shift that content to prime time and onto a device better suited for consumption.”

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