Try Participate Learning — Better teaching through digital resources.

WikiMobile Encyclopedia lets you bring Wikipedia on the road

by Ian Black

How much do two million Wikipedia articles weigh? About as much as your Android phone. WikiMobile Encyclopedia delivers the content of Wikipedia to your phone in an Android app. It works, but it's not the only game in town for accessing Wikipedia material over a cell phone.

WikiMobile offers a straightforward user experience. Enter any topic you can imagine in the Search bar, or browse through categorized subjects. The app's Popular category gets further broken down into In the News, Celebrities, Sports and Games, Movies and TV, Arts and Culture and Science and Technology. When viewing the retrieved articles you page forward or backward using buttons at the bottom of the screen. With a couple of taps, you can download related images, a table of contents for the article or the Quick Facts. The app allows you to save bookmarks and quickly jump to those articles later.

Several other Android apps – including WikiDroid and QuickPedia – offer similar functionality. Also, the mobile web site for Wikipedia, which you can access over your phone's Web browser, works pretty darn well. One of the key differences between WikiMobile and the mobile Wikipedia web site is simply moving within an article. On the mobile web site you scroll up and down, and in WikiMobile you page forward and backward.

Finally, those interested in Wikipedia articles in languages other than English – and Wikipedia supports multiple languages – had best look elsewhere as WikiMobile only displays English language content.

Overall, I liked the fact that WikiMobile worked fast and reliably, but no feature made it stand out over the competition, so I rate it an "eh" of three out of five bars.