Substack redesigns its mobile app to boost discovery and engagement

Substack is overhauling its mobile app with a redesigned Home experience to boost discovery and engagement, the company announced on Wednesday. The app now features a new reading queue at the top of the screen that makes it easier to browse from post to post by swiping right. The queue lets you quickly share posts in a note, which is Substack’s version of a tweet, or to other social media platforms.

The company says the redesigned queue aims to boost retention for writers by prioritizing new posts from paid subscriptions, content that a user has saved, and the publications that they read often.

Substack is also launching a discovery feed that will feature notes and post recommendations. The company is encouraging writers on the platform to share notes in order to reach more readers, and ultimately turn them into subscribers.

“We’re unveiling a Home experience for the Substack app that puts new posts in an elegant reading queue at the top of the screen and pairs it with a feed that showcases the vitality of the Substack network,” the company wrote in a blog post. “The Substack app already drives strong growth for writers—more than 25% of subscriptions in the network originate from the app—and we hope these improvements will turbocharge that effect.”

In addition, Substack is moving its inbox to the center tab of the app. The inbox filters for saved and audio posts to help you find what you’re looking for. You can swipe right to save, or left to archive. You can go to your settings to choose between the classic inbox design and a more compact version.

Although that app’s Chat section is still in the right-most tab, Substack has moved notifications to the top bar. You can now also tap your profile picture in the top right corner to open your subscription library, view your profile or adjust your app settings.

The app redesign comes as Substack has been working to make its platform feel more like a social network. Last month, the company introduced the ability for users to follow writers, giving users a way to keep up with what a writer is doing without having to subscribe to their newsletter.

Substack has been looking to take on X (formerly known as Twitter) ever since Elon Musk took the reins of the company last year, and made its most notable attempt to do so when launching its Twitter-like Notes feature in April.

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