Apps for the Readers

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Every phenomenon has its problems and advantages. Often when the change is not understood by us, we oppose it and when the positives start showing, we slowly accept it. Technology and its progress is considered a boon as well as a bane in our lives. We blame it for causing all sorts of disruption in our lives, from insomnia to PDA to death of sparrows because of mobile towers.

And the death of books and other physical reading material.

Perhaps the above statement will find resonance with a LOT of people and avid readers. Specially the ones who have grown up with the smell of old books and thick volumes in their hands.

For long we have blamed and are still blaming the internet and E-books for taking away the joy of reading. But have you noticed the amazing accessibility of many rare and old books and papers? Even students preparing their theses can upload their research papers and let readers have a look at it. Also, if there’s a book you can’t find in the library, it’s sure to be online. You don’t have to be disappointed at not finding it when you needed it.

Nowadays, with the rise of the smartphones, there is an app for everyone. Instagram for the photo-freak, Zomato for the foodie, WhatsApp for the chatter…

What about the reader?

“You must be joking?”

No, I’m not.

While the internet IS to be read, and read well, there are a few must-have apps for your smartphone, if you like reading and knowing more and more, on-the-go…

1. Flipkart App.


Now this is a very handy app. It lets you order right from your phone or you can just simply browse. There’s a different sort of happiness in browsing through hundreds of books. And with the Flipkart e-book app, you can also order e-books, after reading 10% of it.

2. Wikipedia.


Once upon a time, every school project of every teen was literally ripped off from Wikipedia. Over the years, it might have lost its sheen, but no search remains complete without a peek into the good old Wiki. With the new Wikipedia app, you can even view the articles without any internet connection.

3. The Dictionary.


Now you don’t have to alphabetically search pages for the word. Install this app, and it does the dirty work for you. No more worries of having to even think about carrying a dictionary or Googling the word and then selecting from the appropriate pages.

4. Amazon Kindle.


You don’t need to own a Kindle now. Just install this app and read eBooks on your phone, including thousands of free Kindle books. And yes, it also includes the New York Times bestsellers and new releases. The best part is, you can adjust the font size, margin width and line height. No more squinting.

5. Medical Dictionary.


Now this is for the ones who want to be accurate about every disease, every rash and every acne. This app contains over 100,00o medical terms and definitions. And the best part is, you don’t need an internet connection whenever you want to search a term. So, get ready to put Medical students in a fix.

6. Freda.


This is a free program for reading eBooks on Windows Phone. It offers customizable controls, fonts and colors, plus annotations and bookmarks along with the ability to look up dictionary definitions and translations and text-to-speech reading. Even more, this app can display images and diagrams in books. Plus, it can download books from any website or e-mail attachments. You don’t need any internet connection to read them. So much for just 5MB! Go Freda!

7. Current Affairs.

current affairs

This is for the GK freaks. This app briefs about happenings in different areas like Sports, Science and Technology, War and Conflicts, etc. The information compiled is based on questions usually asked in different competitive exams. And again, you don’t need internet connection whenever you feel like reading it. Also, it gets automatically updated whenever your data connection is on so that new information is always stored.

8. Google Translate.


Yes. The app for all your fascination with language. You can translate many languages, listen to the translations being spoken aloud, directly translate speech and handwriting and also view dictionary results for single words or phrases.

9. TED.


TED’s official app presents talks from some of the world’s most fascinating people: education radicals, tech geniuses, medical mavericks, business gurus and music legends. There are more than 1700 TEDTalk videos and audios  on the official app, with more being added each week.

10. The Religion Apps.


There’s a host of apps for religious texts and scriptures. It eases your reading of the texts and many apps offer translation and multilingual sub-titles and so on. They are interesting ’cause they let you see and often hear each word and understand them with a clarity not always felt while listening to oral renditions or the original text.

Well, I never really thought that apps could actually make reading much more interesting and varied, let alone making it more snazzy. Now that I’ve personally used some of the apps mentioned above, I can safely endorse the fact that technology has, really bridged the gap between non-readers and serious readers, without burning any bridges.

Believer. Reader. Brooder.