The 6 Best Speed Reading Apps of 2020

Get through those books in record time

The Ultimate Guide to Online Learning at Home
The Ultimate Guide to Online Learning at Home

When there's so much to read yet so little time to do it, being a quick reader sure does help. You can certainly practice reading faster on your own with a stopwatch or timer, but chances are you might better improve by using a speed reading app that teaches you how to read at a pace the works best for you.

Learning how to read faster is really only half the battle. Absorbing and understanding the information as you read it at a lightning speed is the real challenge. Here are six of the best speed reading apps for your smartphone, tablet, or desktop computer for advancing your reading skills.

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Spreeder website
What We Like
  • Add your own reading material.

  • Very effective.

  • Clean user interface.

What We Don't Like
  • Limited search feature for books.

  • Difficult to adjust speed while reading.

Spreeder not only offers state-of-the-art speed reading software to its users, it has a wealth of expert training resources, too. Designed to help you learn how to read three or more times faster than your normal reading rate, Spreeder gives you access to a tool you can customize to speed read at a comfortable pace, along with guided training and progress reports you can use to advance your reading skills as quickly and effectively as possible.

Spreeder gives you access to public domain reading material already built into your cloud library, along with the opportunity to include your own reading material by uploading files or adding web links. The web version of Spreeder and its mobile apps are free to use, but you'll get more advanced training and features by upgrading to Spreeder CX.

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ReadMe! (With BeeLine Reader & Spritz)

ReadMe! website
What We Like
  • Easy to customize.

  • Incorporates the latest speed reading technologies.

  • Offline available with premium plan.

  • Affordable.

What We Don't Like
  • Not as intuitive as other options.

  • Intrusive promotions for a subscription.

  • Subscription required to sync with other devices.

ReadMe! is an e-reader app that allows you to store and sync all your favorite ebooks across your iOS or Android device. It's integrated with two unique speed reading tools called BeeLine Reader and Spritz.

BeeLine Reader takes a color-coded approach to speed reading by adding a color gradient to each line of text. The color gradient helps guide your eyes from the end of one line of text to the beginning of the next line, essentially helping you read faster and taking some of the strain off your eyes.

Spritz allows you to read one word at a time at a certain WPM rate (similar to the Spreeder tool). Designed to minimize eye movement, which takes up as much as 80% of your time spent reading, the developers of Spritz claim the tool can help you read at a rate of up to 1,000 words per minute.

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Outread website
What We Like
  • Easy to customize.

  • Very affordable.

  • Works with many ebook formats.

  • Increases reading comprehension.

What We Don't Like
  • Only supports English.

  • Supports a limited number of file formats.

Do you use popular news reader apps like Instapaper, Pocket, or Pinboard on your iOS device? If so, you'll want to have a look at Outread, which is a great little speed reading app that syncs with all these apps so you can blast through articles you find online.

Outread has two-speed reading tools where you can read a book or document one word at a time or optionally use a tool to highlight every word one by one as it moves along each line of text. Its clean and simple interface has both a daytime and nighttime theme to match reading conditions to your environment and you can use the app to add your own ebooks (DRM-free epub), upload Microsoft Word documents, paste URLs to specific web pages, or even enjoy a classic novel from the app's built-in library.

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Accelerator website
What We Like
  • Speed is adjustable.

  • Supports multiple themes.

  • Integrated browser.

  • Affordable.

What We Don't Like
  • Only available for iOS.

  • Slight learning curve.

  • Importing from the web can be slow.

Similar to Outread, Accelerator is another speed reading app for iOS devices with a clean interface and news reader integration with popular apps like Instapaper and Pocket. It comes with three different themes to match your reading environment and makes it easy to save articles you find on the web to speed read later.

Although accelerator doesn't let you upload any of your own ebooks or documents, you can at least use it to read text, rich text, and Word documents from your email app, and some other apps as well. Unlike other speed reading apps in this list, this particular one displays a line of text in the center of the screen, moving through it at a certain customizable WPM rate like a carousel.

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Readsy website
What We Like
  • Free to use.

  • Paste any URL to get started.

  • Supports text or PDFs.

  • Simple to install.

What We Don't Like
  • Difficult to disable on some sites.

  • Limited features.

Readsy is a slick little tool that takes a web-based approach to speed reading. Simply navigate to the Readsy website in your desktop or mobile web browser and start using it instantly—no signing up or downloading required.

Like ReadMe!, Readsy uses Spritz integration, which is the technology that powers its speed reading tool. You can use it to upload PDFs and TXT files, enter a URL from a web page, or simply paste some text into the text field. Customize the WPM rate using the dropdown menu below the Spritz reader and use the menu at the top to access the editor whenever you want to see the full text of what you're reading (and optionally make edits to it).

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Wear Reader

Wear Reader website
What We Like
  • Easily adjust the speed.

  • Traditional or Spritz (one word) modes.

  • Supports multiple file formats.

What We Don't Like
  • Cannot import from iBooks.

  • Interface takes some adjustment to use.

  • Automatic screen shut off can get annoying.

If you own an Apple Watch or a Wear OS (formerly Android Wear) smartwatch, you may be interested in checking out Wear Reader. It lets you speed read from your watch when you're on the go. All you have to do is upload your favorite books, PDF files, TXT files, or Word documents to your iOS or Android device, attach your smartwatch, and start reading.

In speed reading mode, each word will flash on the screen one by one at a customizable WPM rate, with convenient fast-forward and rewind functions available in case you miss something and need to go back (and then forward again). A traditional reading mode is also available so you can read the text just like you would on any device, using the scrolling function to move up and down the page. And if you're a Wear OS user, you can switch to night mode to make nighttime speed reading easier on your eyes.

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