A few weeks ago I stumbled upon an app I’d wished for for years. It’s Blinkist, and you should try it too. Please. It’s for your own good.

Blinkist summarizes popular nonfiction books down to 15-minute summaries of their key points. Topics range from economics, current events, marketing and communications, motivation and self-improvement, and others. One day I jumped around from social engineering, the rise and fall of Yahoo, and the principles of essentialism.

Like many people, my reading list is far too long. Blinkist summarizes many books on that list so I can take their best lessons right away.

Naturally, as a person with a website who likes something, I’m writing about it. A basic breakdown of the good and bad qualities I’ve found so farm and if you should try it too. This is because I’ve mentioned Blinkist to many people and they always ask for more info. That’s a good sign I should just write a damn review.

The Short Version

If your time is valuable and you don’t want to read this whole post, here’s the short version: Everyone should at least try Blinkist. If you want more productive reading than mindless Internet fluff or the news cycle, this is your best bet.

The biggest sign this app is for you: If you’re dying to read lots of books but can never find the time. I would see great non-fiction titles on a shelf and not know where to start. If that’s you too, get Blinkist. If you’re excited by all these books but just settle on a few specific titles, it may not be for you. There’s a difference between wanting to read all the non-fiction, and liking some non-fiction. If you’re in the first group, Blinkist is a must. If you’re not, it’s worth a shot but many not fit.

Blinkist’s Features

Blinkist’s app is thankfully very simple. You can search through a library of hundreds of nonfiction books by category, new, trending, keywords, or custom collections. Finding new or related content is easy, so expect your “books to read” library to fill up fast. New books let you see a basic summary, people who’d find the book useful (such as philosophy nerds or marketing pros), and their different sections.

The books are split into 10-20 minute-long summaries. Each section has a main point or lesson to it. You can highlight specific passages and review them later, so taking notes is easy. The book’s last section is usually a quick review, action steps you can take, related titles, and a link to buy the whole book if you want more.

When you sign up you get three free days of full features. This includes premium features like:

After your free trial’s up, you have to choose between $50 a year for a regular account, or $80 a month for a premium one.

You read that right: if you really want Blinkist, there’s no long-term free option. While it may cost less than a year of Netflix or Spotify, you need to pay the whole year in advance. So make sure you’re a real Blinkist fan.

With the basic stuff done, let’s get to the good and bad of my Blinkist experience so far.

The Good

The Bad

In Conclusion

My main recommendation at the start is the same: if you’re a naturally curious reader with too much on your reading list, Blinkist is perfect. If your tastes are more selective and in-depth, be cautious before signing up.

Regardles, Blinkist is worth a look for any reading-lover and is a great app. Please check it out!

~ Cheers, Max A