Juno, the social reading app for the internet

Juno aggregates blogs and articles from all over the internet and lets you read them in a reader-friendly format. It shows you what your friends are reading and recommends your next read. It’s like Medium - but without centralised content and censorship.

Expertise

Design, Engineering, Product Strategy

Platforms

iOS, Android, web, MacOS, Windows

Deliverables

Prototype, MVP, V1.0, Post-launch dev

Want to use?

A great reading experience synced across all your devices.

There is no standard for reading articles and blogs on the internet. Of course, there are the likes of Medium. But platforms like these censor content and as a user you need to hand over your content to them to host it. We created Juno, which aggregates content from all over the web. Users can read every piece of content in a friendly format, reading progress is saved and synced across all devices, and there is a social layer that enables users to follow their friends and see what they are reading.

Challenge

Content is king - and there is more reading being shared than ever. What users are missing is one centralised place to engage with it all, rather than needing to switch between apps, email accounts and publications.

Approach

Our users needed several things. First, one place that could store and display articles from any vendor (e.g. The New York Times, Medium, or a personal blog). Second, that this was cross-platform, so you could read on your desktop and continue on your phone later. Third, that you could track your reading progress and make comments to highlight important parts. And lastly, that friends and colleagues could share articles with you and the app could make recommendations based on your reading habits.

We've created an MVP for iOS and Android with React Native. The web version is based on React and was used as the base for the MacOS and Windows desktop app, which we built with Electron. The sharing and display functionality is enabled by a secure API layer. And the recommender system is driven by a machine learning algorithm.

Insight

Users are relying less on single sources of information (like news outlets) and prefer to share and comment on information from various vendors with friends. In the workplace, this is also how information is shared. However, until now this has relied on sharing URL's. And recommended reading is restricted to vendors such as Medium, so you have to browse extensively.

Impact

Find new reads from your friends and get personalised recommendations. Follow people you find interesting and see what they are reading. And easily share your own reads and make bundled read-lists. Read all blogs and articles in a reader-friendly format, customisable to your own liking. Easily save content from all over the web using the browser plugin or by just dropping the link in the app. Pick up where you left off, as Juno syncs across your devices, making sure you never have to search for the point where you stopped reading last time.

Juno's technology specifications

We’ve designed and developed Juno entirely from scratch. To maintain a low entry barrier for new developers we decided to write both user-interface and server side application in Javascript frameworks.

Jorrit Keijzer

Founder Juno

Founder commentary

At Eli5 we are always on the lookout for high quality content, from brief blogs to long reads and articles. We've always been dependent on the likes of Twitter. However, platforms like these are cluttered and you have to put some effort in to find the stuff you're looking for.

After some conversations with the team, I decided to dive into the topic. Within no time, we had a validated problem to solve. Bringing interesting reads to users without the clutter of the main social platforms.

Together with our designers and developers we've built Juno to where it is now in less than 6 months. Juno is now an independent company operating separately form Eli5.

Jelle Bot

Head of Design

Design Commentary

We did everything we could to bring users the closest experience to reading an actual book. No distractions, just helpful features to make it even better than reading an actual book.

Patrick Huijten

Full-Stack Developer

Founder commentary

There is no standard for reading articles and blogs on the internet. Of course, there are the likes of Medium. But platforms like these censor content and as a user you need to handover you content to them to host it. We created Juno, which aggregates content from all over the web. Users can read every piece of content in a friendly format, reading progress is saved and synced across all devices, and there is a social layer that enables users to follow their friends and see what they are reading.

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