It’s been a long time coming. Since I got myself an iPhone, and especially since the iPad, I’ve joined the ranks of the millions of users out there who have been waiting for a simple and easy way to clip web content on my mobile device. I’ve used Read It Later and Instapaper, I’ve copied things into email and sent them to Evernote, Springpad, Producteev, and myself. I’ve even used the desktop clipper bookmarklets with reasonable — if time-consuming — success. That’s all in the past now: Springpad has hooked up the mobile world with a new and improved web clipper that is near to seamless.
The new Springpad mobile clipper doesn’t have the fancy bells and whistles of the Chrome extension, of course, but the updated bookmarklet is straightforward and easy on the eyes, and it works just as well in Mobile Safari and Atomic Web Browser as it does on desktop browsers. I used to use the old Springpad bookmarklet, and sometimes the Evernote and Memonic ones as well, but more often than not, they would load or function slowly — if they loaded at all. I’m presented with or stumble across a plethora of juicy things I want to follow upon in any given day – and most of it happens while I’m not at my computer. Now I can grab a bookmark for later, organize it, and move on within seconds. No fuss, no later processing, and no clutter in my email inbox.
Clipping Content is Great on iPad, a Bit Neutered on iPhone
Clipping bits of content from an article or page is a bit of a problem, though, at least on the iPhone. When using the iPad, I had no issues at all. Select a bit of the text or an entire article, fire the clipper, and it appears in the bookmark’s description area, complete with formatting — unless you want to edit it, of course. That strips the HTML. On the iPhone, however, no amount of selecting or even copying text to the clipboard will get the content you want to clip to show up. All you will get is the description write-up. I’m not sure why this is, and it definitely limits the iPhone to a quick link-grabber as opposed to a full-fledged clipper.
If you really want to clip that bit of content or entire article for later reading while on the iPhone, you can copy the text and edit it into the description field by doing a select-all-and-paste maneuver. Once again, though, you will lose all formatting, including any links and images.
The iPhone issue aside, the clipper rocks for getting those bookmarks into Springpad and organized in your notebooks and tag structure. Notebooks are an easy drop down, and tags auto-complete as you type. You can also change the type of save you want it to be. Bookmark is the default, but you can change it to Business, Restaurant, Recipe, Product, and all the rest with just a few touches. Almost all the rest, that is — Note is missing, and so is Task. Not a huge loss, I suppose, unless you want to save a bookmark to a task or a note, which could happen. If you really need that functionality, you can always go into Springpad and add a reminder or a note directly to the bookmark.
Installation is Easy
Springpad Has a Few More Tricks Up Their Sleeves
The new mobile clipper isn’t the only thing Springpad’s been up to lately. They also released a Quick Add bookmark for your home screen that makes it faster for you to load up the Springpad app to add a note, photo, or whatever else you choose. This is nice for those of us without widgets like those Android folks.
I also have received word from Springpad CEO, Jeff Janer, that they have some big moves in the works that will differentiate them even more from Evernote. Having a mobile clipper that consistently works and works well is a good start though. They just need to fix that pesky iPhone issue…
What are your thoughts on the Springpad Mobile Clipper?