Reddit have launched their own application for the “front page of the Internet,” and it’s now available to download on Android & iOS. It feels like since the beginning of time, or at least the founding of Reddit, mobile users have been forced to browse their favorite subreddits using third party applications like Reddit Is Fun and Bacon Reader.
Both of Reddit’s apps have been in beta for some time with Android since January and iOS since March, but the software is now available to download in the US, Canada, the UK, and Australia. Reddit plans on making its apps available in more countries over the following months.
Alien Blue, which has been the official Reddit app for about 18 months, is being removed from the iOS App Store. Its paid iPad version will remain available until Reddit develops its own dedicated tablet app. We would have thought a tablet optimised version would have been with this launch. Those who have Alien Blue downloaded can continue to use the app.
The new apps represent Reddit’s first concerted effort to create top-class mobile experiences since it acquired Alien Blue in October 2014. The social news and community site’s mobile approach has always been somewhat inconsistent; a dedicated AMA app was launched two years ago and later abandoned. To fill the void, third-party Reddit clients with unique takes on how the site should operate on smartphones have sprung up and stuck around for years. Of that ever-growing list, Alien Blue stood out as the most polished and most used of the bunch, giving Reddit a good reason to scoop it up.
To help get the app off the ground, Reddit is offering users who download it within the first week a free trial of Reddit’s ad-free gold membership. The company plans on maintaining advertising on its mobile apps for free users, but in a way consistent with its philosophy on keeping it out of the way when possible.
Revenue aside, Reddit hopes the apps will give people a fresh way to use the site. As Lead iOS Engineer Chen Chen said, “For people who are really used to the desktop experience it’s brand new.” In that regard, he adds, the apps “send a signal, that Reddit has become even better.”
Did you download the Reddit app for either Android or iOS? Let us know what you think in the comments below, or on Google+, Facebook, or Twitter.