If there is one thing that the internet enabled us to do, is the ability to access a whole world of information for free, right at our fingertips. From finding quick tips and tricks for cooking Thanksgiving dinner, to researching the latest advancements in the medical field. You can virtually find an unlimited amount of information on the web. Instead of spending money on an expensive encyclopedia collection, now you can access a wealth of information for free online from sources like Encyclopedia Britannica, Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, and more.
It has almost become a second nature of mine to pick up my phone and type in a Google search to find the answer to any question that comes up. However, Google results include everything from encyclopedia websites to news articles, forums, blog posts, and more. When faced with hundreds of thousands of search results, it can take time to search through them to find the information you need. So, I decided to find the best encyclopedia apps to instantly find information on any topic. After spending some time on the web, I came across a site called AppGrooves that has a top 10 list of the best encyclopedia apps.
I checked out some of the apps on their list, and I reviewed my top 3 favorites.
Wikipedia – Rating: 4.3, Downloads: 10M+
My first pick is none other than Wikipedia. What I really like about it is that you can find updated information on any topic and in a variety of different languages. In fact, the wealth of information is available in more than 300 different languages, so you will easily find what you need, regardless of your native language. I also like that you can easily save your favorite content, so you can access it quickly later without having to search for it again. Another plus I found is that you can get personalized reading recommendations based on the articles you read, so you always have something new and interesting to learn. Lastly, being a night reader myself, I was pleased to see that the developers included a night mode, which is much easier on the eyes.
Although I did not have any issues, I noticed that some users reported issues when trying to access saved content on other devices. Apparently, it is a rare glitch, and you can get around it easily by e-mailing any links to yourself. New updates are released frequently, so hopefully, a fix will be included soon.
Pros: Over 300 languages, save favorite content, night mode.
Cons: Rare content syncing issue across devices.
Overall: Great for finding information on any topic and in virtually any language, although you might run into syncing issues when accessing saved content on multiple devices.
WikiMed (Android) – Rating: 4.7, Downloads: 100K+
My second pick is WikiMed for Android devices. I found it to be a great choice for finding medical information. So, if you are a medical student or a practitioner, this is a must on your phone! I like that you can find information on everything from diseases and medications to anatomy, sanitation and more. The best part is that you can access the complete library of information offline, so you can find what you need anytime, anywhere.
The only drawback I found is that you need approximately 1GB of free space on your phone to download WikiMed’s library of medical information. However, it is certainly worth it, especially if you need to find medical information in a remote location or if your WiFi connection is unreliable.
Pros: Wealth of medical information, offline access, free.
Cons: Takes up approximately 1GB of space on your phone.
Overall: Access a world of medical knowledge without an internet connection, but make sure you have enough free space on your phone.
Wikipanion Plus (iOS) – Rating: 4.0
My third pick is Wikipanion Plus for iOS devices. I found it to be a great choice if you frequently use Wikipedia as a source of information, as you can easily bookmark articles or add them to a Queue list to read later. I like that you can also download select articles to your phone, so you can read them without an internet connection. I also loved that you can customize text size to your preference, to make reading easier on your device.
The only drawback I found is that the more articles I downloaded, I noticed that Wikipanion would take slightly longer to load. However, I only noticed this issue once I had downloaded well over a dozen articles, and the extra loading time wasn’t really that significant.
Pros: Bookmark articles, queue list, download articles for offline access, customizable text size.
Cons: Slightly longer load time the more articles you download.
Overall: Access Wikipedia articles anywhere, anytime by bookmarking them and downloading them to your phone, but you might experience slightly slower loading times the more articles you download.
So, these are my top 3 encyclopedia apps. Whether you are looking for an easy way to find information on any topic, or you want an offline encyclopedia you can access anytime, anywhere, I’m certain these picks will get you everything you need and more. Do you have any favorite encyclopedia apps? Let me know in the comments so I can include them on my next list!