March 24, 2014 Last Updated 1:32 pm

Medium launches iPhone app more for reading content, but for now, not for creating it

The new blogging websites Medium last week launched its first mobile app for the iPhone. The app is being described by Evan Williams, the man behind Medium, as “a simple app that lets you read and recommend Medium stories, wherever you go.”

Medium-iPhone5-lgThe app, called Medium – Everyone’s Stories inside the App Store, is like the platform itself, a slimmed down publishing platform. The app is designed strictly for reading and sharing content. Composing content will probably come next.

The app makes the user log in using their Twitter account, and at least in my case, that is where things ground to a halt. The app failed to complete the log in and so was no usable. I suppose this was a one-off error, but it certainly proved to be a problem (though reentering my password again in the iOS settings finally solved the problem).

Without the composing element of the app, it is hard to see the point. Medium, as a platform, is one of those simple, simple, simple digital publishing platforms that journalists seem to love (guess they hate design) and the website works and looks just fine using the browser on your smartphone. In fact, ins’t that the point of the platform? To present the content in the simplest possible way? For me, this is perfect for smartphone reading now, no app is necessary unless it is also for composing.

Many early users of the app seem to agree: the app is fine, but future updates will need to address composing.

Medium is the latest new launch of Evan Williams, who was behind the creation of both the Blogger platform and Twitter. Blogger was created by Pyra Labs and, of course, was acquired by Google back in 2003 and Williams came along with the acquisition for a short time, but left in 2004. One of his follow-up projects was Obvious Corp. the company that created Twitter. Williams served as CEO, succeeding founder Jack Dorsey in 2008, stepping down from the role in 2010.

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