Does reading a non-fiction and learning a bunch from it sound good to you? What if you could read a non-fiction, wherever you are, in whatever time you have? And even better – what if you had a chance to cover a book’s key insights in 15 minutes? This doesn’t need to be a ‘what if’ situation for you, because a Berlin-based startup wants you to have all this and more.
What is Blinkist?
Blinkist is a catalog of non-fiction books summarized down to ‘blinks’, or key chapters, accessible on your desktop browser or via mobile apps. There are synopses for several categories including business and career, popular science, productivity and self-help and health and happiness.
The name of the app comes from its ‘blinks’, or concise chapters. The idea is that a blink captures and presents a key concept from a non-fiction and makes it readable within two minutes. While it’s no replacement for the complete context, it does a great job of summing up important information in blinks.
I always imagined learning new things through bite-sized chunks of information, but never really looked around for something that lets me devour multiple books and gain insightful information within just a few minutes. Blinkist has been a great experience for me in terms of capturing key information from a book and making it readable within a few minutes.
How to Use Blinkist
To get a feel of Blinkist, you can sign up for a free trial that comes with no strings attached or automatic subscriptions afterwards. Once you log in, you’re going to see some insightful information from significant non-fiction words such-as Guy Kawasaki’s The Art of the Start and Seth Godin’s Permission Marketing.
Each book is broken down into the most interesting parts and the description for each book displays the length of time it will take to read, the author bio, who might be interested in reading the book, and a link to download a full copy of the non-fiction. The 12-15 minute summaries of a book has the potential to make readers want to read more its context.
There is one tab to the left of the interface and four on the right. The left tab lets you browse different categories while the tabs at the right lets you search for a book title or author, go to the library of the content you’re currently reading (selected books are added to this section), see the highlights by date or book, and upgrade your account, add to your wishlist, or invite friends.
You can adjust the font size of a book on both the web and mobile platforms. The passages of the books can be highlighted as well as shared on social media such as Facebook and Twitter.
Most chapters I read were approximately 250-300 words, with blinks having about eight to ten chapters on average. This may seem like too much to complete in 15 minutes, but it really isn’t. If you’re reading at 200 words per minute, that is 1.5 minutes per chapter. So eight to ten chapters will require 15 minutes or less.
The settings section of Blinkist lets you change your account’s password, manage notifications for your reading progress, invite friends, switch between English and German, and upgrade your account.
For people on the go, you can also read anywhere, anytime with Blinkist mobile apps.
If you need to read a non-fiction piece for work or school purposes, reading blinks might not be your best solution. However, if you enjoy learning new things through reading but don’t have time to read entire books, Blinkist may provide you with a lot of knowledge. The company says more than 20 new books are added each month.
Blinkist is a subscription-based service. Registered users get a tree trail period, and subscription costs $7.99 per month, or $49.99 annually. You can sign up for a free 3 day trial of Blinkist using your Facebook, Xing, or email address. You can also download Blinkist for iOS or Blinkist for Android – both apps provide the same free trial option and subscription rates.
Be sure to use code kikolani for a 30% discount!