My company is considering adding an Instapaper button to our content-driven site, but we can't seem to find any information on how it really works. All the site says is that it "saves the page to your account."

Does it actually save the content of the page to an Instapaper server, or does it save a link to the URL somewhere and then fetch the URL live when you go to your account?

2 Answers 2


As far as I know, Instapaper "reads" the website by stripping the content of all navigation elements, ads and images. The result is than saved on the the Instapaper servers for the user to read later.

Read more here: Information for Publishers

  • Thanks, I had already read the publishers link (as well as everything else on the Instapaper site, including the blog) but still could not get a definitive answer as to whether any content is actually saved to an Instapaper server.
    – EmmyS
    Commented Apr 8, 2011 at 16:29
  • I believe they save the content. Two things make me believe that: 1. the text link on each saved article in your account (from the web version of the app); 2. "... as is the saved content of each bookmark saved by the bookmarklet." bit from an article on their blog. However, this is can be easily tested: create a blog article, bookmark it on Instapaper and the delete it (the original blog post). If you can still read it, means that it was saved on their servers.
    – Alex
    Commented Sep 13, 2011 at 3:48

Well, in Instapaper you can read the articles you saved in the original format or striped down, but always with the images of the article. It's only the ads, header and navigation information that is striped down. You click on the link to see the original version and on the Text button to see the stripped version.

Additionally Instapaper also has folders but there is a bookmarklet for every folder, so I don't know if you'll be able to save in a way users can choose the folder.

A really nice feature instapaper has is the possibility to deliver the read later pages you saved directly into your kindle (or any device with a kindle application).

Another nice feature is that users can link with their readability pro accounts and with that reward the authors of the articles they save and read later.

(I was going to post images of Instapaper here but I don't have enough reputation to do so)

  • How can i read the saved articles in the original format? I see only striped down(often incorrectly) content. Commented Jun 24, 2012 at 12:46
  • 1
    Well, in the Instapaper web app if you click on the title of article it sends you to the original article. It only sends you to the striped down version of the article if you click on the text button. I don't have the mobile apps so I'm not able to tell you how to do it but I'm sure there's a way to it. Commented Jun 25, 2012 at 14:05
  • Thanks for clarification. On iPad when offline, I can view only stripped version. If online, I can open original page in browser Commented Jun 25, 2012 at 21:06
  • It makes sense. It must save the striped down version in cache so you can access it offline. Commented Jun 26, 2012 at 8:29

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