Can you take a feature designed for rapid text comprehension in mobile apps and use it as the primary interface for a tiny screen?

Hello, flashy, old friend!

I recently discovered a feature in the Kindle Reader app that I'd seen on the web a couple years ago and really enjoyed: Word Runner.

Demo usage from Amazon's Word Runner page

What is it and does it work?

Word Runner is an alternative way to read. It displays text from your Kindle books one word at a time at the speed of your choice.

Does it work?

Yes. It will completely replace (most types) of reading for me. I read at an average or slower pace than most peers and Word Runner easily doubles my reading and comprehension rate for casual texts.

So what?

While reading James Cameron's biography, holding my phone with a single word in the middle of my screen (TODO: more on mobile app text sizes in a different post...), I was thinking, "Dang, why am I carrying my phone, when all I need to read a book is a device that would fit on my keychain?"

RSA keychain

Exit thoughts

Can this machine gun UI pattern be affectively applied to interfaces where real estate is precious and content is mostly text? Could it be be tamed and coupled with a means of control/navigation to serve as a complete UI (e.g. would using this to read text messages be an advancement or a headache)?