It seems a little odd to me, that I should be writing a review for a mobile app and singing its praises because of how few functions it has, but that’s exactly what I’m doing. The iA Writer app is a word processor that does very little more than provide a virtual typewriter for you. It does away with most of the bells and whistles inhabiting other word processing apps and keeps it all very simple. You type it and then you save it. There’s nothing more to it than that. I’ve been using it for over two years now and I’m quite happy with this little app.
It is this simplistic level of functionality that ensures its main purpose is achieved. It’s an app designed for those who want to write. In its most fundamental way, it’s for people who want a quick and easy way to put down words and not have to worry about any of the complexity relating to fonts, colours, line sizes, or indents. It’s not completely functionless, of course. You can still Undo, Redo, search within the text, use bullets and/or italics, but all the functions that iA Writer has are to remove the distraction and to allow you to focus on writing.
Easy writing is its goal, and once you have written down everything you want, you can use iA Writer to export them to other types of document (plain text files, HTML, PDF or to a Microsoft Word) which all bar PDF can be used to import into other programs, where you can change the formatting to your hearts content.
There’s one function in particular that I feel I need to mention and that is the ‘Focus’ function. By using the dropdown list at the top of the app you are able to highlight various word types within your writing. You can highlight adjectives, nouns, adverbs, verbs or conjunctions. They’ll show up in blue text. Firstly, it will teach you what those word types are if you’re not sure, and secondly you can start to see the flow of your writing and how your paragraphs are constructed.
There is also the night view mode, which switches your screen from black text on a white background to white text on a black background which is easier on the eyes when you’re hammering out that novel late at night.
So, there you have it. If you are looking for a word processing app, that is more suited for writing than the default notepad mobile app, but without all of the clutter associated with formatting, give iA Writer a shot. It’s is currently retailing at a little under £3.99 from the apple store and in my opinion is really worth a shot.
iA winter is available for iOS, Mac and Android. You can check their official website here.