Wattpad, an online community of readers and writers, this week released an update to its iPhone and Android Apps.
The biggest change was the addition of offline capabilities, allowing mobile users to read, write, and interact with others without an internet connection.
This new feature is an important one for two reasons: one, mobile makes up 85% of the platform's activity, and two, nearly every country in the world has users of Wattpad, including many where internet connections are spotty at best.
Offline capabilities are divided into two sub-features: Offline Access and Archive.
Offline Access provides full functionally to users so they can read, vote, and comment on stories without an internet connection. With Offline Access people riding the subway, travelling on an airplane, or in other places where internet is not available can access millions of free stories through their mobile devices. The Archive for Android feature moves already-read stories out of a user’s Wattpad Library to load current stories more quickly.
“At Wattpad, we’re making it easy for people to access millions of free stories on their mobile devices,” said Allen Lau, co-founder and ceo of Wattpad. “With the latest update, it doesn’t matter where you live, what device you use, or even if you’re connected to the internet, you can still find a great story to read on Wattpad.”
The Toronto-based company says that online community spent more than 41 billion minutes on the platform in 2013.
“We’ve redefined what it means to be a reader by empowering a new generation to read, create and shape the stories that matter to them, all from their mobile devices,” noted Lau.