OnSwipe for WordPress Updated – Still Not Worth Using

OnSwipe, the new service that’s supposed to be the next big thing in tablet publishing, was updated today. This was the 2.0 release, and like most second gen releases it was supposed to be the one that worked well. Unfortunately, it’s still not worth using.

This new release offers quite a few more layouts as well as support for blog comments, and I was all set today to say nice things about it. I’d been unfair when I posted about the original release; I didn’t know at the time that VCs often push a startup to launch before they’re ready. But they’re still not ready.

I’ve been following OnSwipe ever since they picked up their first round of capital investment in January. I blogged about them when they launched their first WordPress theme in March, and when their first partner sites launched in June. I like the concept and I’ve been really wanting to see this service succeed, but today’s failure is almost enough to make me give up hope.

I’ve just spent the past hour playing with the OnSwipe plugin. What it’s supposed to be doing is taking my website and showing a tablet optimized version to anyone who visits from a tablet. It’s not. First, OnSwipe still only works with the iPad; it ignores all Android tablets.

It also never worked right with my iPad (and then it stopped working completely). If it were working I would post a screenshot. You’d see that the pictures that I use in the blog posts don’t make it through the OnSwipe service. So the TOC style home screen that OnSwipe offers is actually filled with a bunch of empty squares. It also crashed Safari, but that was just the icing on the cake.

Needless to say, I’m turning it off and waiting for the 3.0 release.

Luckily that will not present a major problem.  The Safari web browser on the iPad is quite good at displaying standard websites. It also now has a new reading mode that lets you pull the articles out and read them without the ads cluttering the view. Here’s a couple demo shoots:

As you can see, it’s usable.  I’m not sure that the iPad needs an app style browsing experience anymore.


Nate Hoffelder

View posts by Nate Hoffelder
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader. He has been blogging about indie authors since 2010 while learning new tech skills weekly. He fixes author sites, and shares what he learns on The Digital Reader's blog. In his spare time, he fosters dogs for A Forever Home, a local rescue group.


  1. adan4 January, 2012

    i don’t have an ipad, but still, interesting, thanks!

    ps – these plugins dont’ work on the free dot com word press versions do they?

    thanks again,


    1. Nate Hoffelder4 January, 2012

      They should come pre-installed.

      1. adan4 January, 2012

        yea, i’m still learning & figuring out this stuff, good thing ya’ll write a lot about all this 😉

        i do try to know how my blog posts, ebooks, etc look on various reading devices, so all this is good info i think

        thanks nate

        1. Mike Cane4 January, 2012

          The plugin is turned ON by DEFAULT at WordPress.com Having had users complain to me about how rotten it is, I turn it OFF in the settings.

          1. adan4 January, 2012

            sorry, i can’t figure out where to access it, i don’t seem to have a plug-ins folder, maybe it’s my theme? i’m using the “bueno” theme, thanks!

          2. adan4 January, 2012

            found it! under appearances 😉

            now, ya’ll say ipad folk say this feature is best turned off?

            thanks again!

  2. […] few weeks back I posted a complaint about the latest release of OnSwipe, the new free iPad publishing service. A friend noticed the post and suggested that I look at […]


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