There are already a few good eBook Libraries for Android out there, but I have yet to come across one that really knocks my socks off—and to be honest, Wattpad doesn’t live up to the challenge, either. That being said, reading enthusiasts shouldn’t pass by this test review, because Wattpad isn’t as bad as all that.
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|Reviewed version||Latest version|
|1.7.0||Varies with device|
Features & Use
Wattpad grants you access to all the eBooks published on www.wattpad.com. You can download and then read these eBooks within seconds. It seems futile to search for specific texts, but I came across a few interesting finds whilst browsing through Wattpad:
The Divine Comedy
A Christmas Carol
Edgar Allan Poe (poems)
Alice in Wonderland
As you can see, the classics are very well represented, but you’ll also find documentary texts, essays about psychoanalysis, socio-political speeches and writings, as well as a multitude of stories, poems, and novellas.
Thus, the available eBooks are like a colorful smorgasbord of knowledge, and the chances of finding something that tickles your fancy aren’t bad at all. Due to copyright laws, you won’t find the latest Grisham or Mary Higgins Clark here, but on the other hand, Wattpad is free of charge.
One of Wattpad’s more useful tools are the so-called “Wattcodes”. If you’re having a poke around on www.wattpad.com and come across something you find interesting, you can display the Wattcode by clicking on “read on mobile”. Once you’re using the Wattpad app, all you need to do enter the Wattcode – rather than the full title – in to the search bar… and voilà, you can read the book on your phone.
Screen & Controls
After you start Wattpad for the first time, you’ll find that there are already a few books on display in your library. If you click on the menu button and then on search you’ll find the following options:
“What’s Hot” and “What’s New” shows you the newest and most popular books. It doesn’t make much sense to browse for books here, as most titles aren't categorized according to their genre. That’s why some of the actual categories are completely empty.
Once you’ve found a book you like, click on it and you’ll find that you have two options: Download Now or Add to Read Later. It’s then sent to your library, where you can access it at a later point in time.
If you’ve opened a book, you can turn pages by sliding you fingers along your screen, vertically or horizontally. If you click on the screen once, the text will slowly start to scroll down and you won’t have to turn pages any longer. You can determine the speed at which the text scrolls by horizontally sliding your finger across the screen (sliding to the left makes it faster, to the right slower). The pages aren’t numbered, your place is shown in percentage. You can access this information by clicking on the menu button. Here you can also access the options “Go to” and “% of text” in order to jump to certain percentaged parts of the book. If you re-open a book you were already reading, you’ll automatically be taken to the last place you left off.
The menu button “Info” is probably meant to display relevant information about the book you’re reading, but this function doesn’t work: no information is displayed.
You can access your “Library” via the menu button, as well as by clicking “More” under “Settings”. You’re also given the option of tweeting the link to the book you’ve just opened. In order to do so, just enter you Twitter data and click “Update Status”. That worked quite well during my test run.
You can access „Settings“ via the menu button. “Settings” allows you to change the color of your background display, as well as the font color and size.
Whether Wattpad is worth your while really depends on what types of texts you enjoy reading, and if these texts are available there. The categories aren’t well maintained, which makes finding books rather difficult. A solution would be to browse for books on your computer and then search for them by entering the Wattcodes in your phone. But because some might perceive this as being a hassle I have to take some point off for it. However, reading books worked quite well.
Speed & Stability
Wattpad ran smoothly and without any problems.
You can download Wattpad for free from the Android Market.