Pinterest has been on a shopping spree lately: the company has just acquired a similar bookmarking service called Instapaper.

But with details of the deal yet to be disclosed, one might wonder what exactly Pinterest has in mind with the purchase — and whether the company would find success at all with Instapaper.

What Is Instapaper?

Instapaper is a pioneer among article "saving" apps that allow online readers to archive content, such as news stories, blog posts, recipes and the like, which they would like to access at a later time.

Right off the bat, the service operates in a similar way to Pinterest. All thanks to a functionality that has made Pinterest a popular platform: the bookmarking feature.

Only that Instapaper specializes in archiving text-heavy content whereas Pinterest offers a more visual interface.

Pinterest has been looking into bookmarking articles as pins since 2013, when it formatted pins to provide readers the headline, byline, story preview and link to the actual article.

In today's graphics-savvy social web, however, Pinterest and Instapaper might have to offer more than the usual newspaper clippings to get the Instapaper app thriving.

How Can Instapaper Add Value To Pinterest?

Instapaper has never really made clear just how many monthly active users it has, even when it was acquired by betaworks in 2013. The company does boast a few accomplishments from the time developer Marco Arment first sold it.

"In the three years since betaworks acquired Instapaper from Marco Arment, we've completely rewritten our backend, overhauled our mobile and web clients, improved parsing and search, and introduced tons of great features like highlights, text-to-speech, and speed reading to the product," the Instapaper team writes.

Making its technology smarter, especially when it comes to discovering new content, is what will define Pinterest's acquisition of Instapaper.

Since Instapaper will reportedly continue as a standalone app under its new parent company, the Instapaper team's expertise in parsing queries and yielding good search results should make it easier for both Instapaper readers and Pinterest pinners to discover quality content from around the web.

What's Next For Instapaper And Pinterest?

Not much will change for users of Instapaper, the team says. But the people behind the app will move from the betaworks office in New York City and be absorbed into the Pinterest team headquartered in San Francisco.

In 2013, Pinterest said more than 5 million articles are pinned on Pinterest each day. With the introduction of Instapaper's parsing skills into Rich Pins and the development of smarter tools for content discovery and bookmarking, Pinterest just might find success with this acquisition.

Photo: Gustavo da Cunha Pimenta | Flickr

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