I know that this is not the first post that I have opened with a reference to my O’Reilly addiction. Yet for some reason, I can’t seem to love Safari like it seems that I should – and I’ve tried numerous times. First I tried reading a book on my phone with the mobile site – because the content was not constrained by browser height, I found myself scrolling down the page, then advancing to the next page, then having to scroll back up – and given how few words can fit on a phone’s diminutive screen, this action had to be repeated so frequently that it took over focus from the book’s content (oh, and if you get your login wrong, it bounces you to the full site to retry, and doesn’t bounce back after, I just discovered). I downloaded Safari To Go for iPad the moment it was released – I do not think the iPad makes a very good eReader, but it’s easier to lug around than my desktop, so I gave it a shot. The videos I tried to watch got stuck, and the book I tried to read worked to a certain point, and then caused the app to crash every time I opened it, at which point I gave up and went back to my ePubs on my Nook Color. Despite owning most titles that I am interested in as eBooks, I still maintain a Safari subscription – mostly as a way to search across titles that are likely also in my own private collection, and maintain wishlists and to-read lists which the main O’Reilly shop provides no facilities for. I also watch the occasional video, which I am for some reason less likely to purchase outright – I think since I am less likely to re-watch or refer back to it as compared to an eBook. Other than a brief mention in the opening of their July 2012 newsletter, it seems there was little fanfare surrounding this new release – no mention by @safaribooks, no update to the Mobile Apps page…really the only detail on the new release seems to be found in the App Store. And the Android version is nowhere to be found on Google Play. However, the iPad app looks like a massive improvement (though it did lose my page on the book I was reading for some reason) – the reading experience feels much improved, and the Offline Bookbag allows up to three books to be stored locally for reading without a network connection. I look forward to giving Safari another try via this vastly improved interface (and the Android version when it materializes!) and maybe finally quitting the ePub habit!
Flashy Man. Greebo. Electronic Royalty.
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