How Fast Can You Read? New App Makes Speed-Reading Easier

by | Mar 11, 2014 | Craft | 8 comments

Ever wished you could read faster? While you may not want to rush through your favorite novel, most of us would be happy to speed-read the morning news or breeze through an explanation that helps us learn a new skill.

Spritz, a new app from a Boston-based startup of the same name, is “reimagining reading” by making it possible to read up to 1,000 words per minute (wpm), when the average adult reads about 300 wpm.

How the heck does Spritz work?

Spritz makes reading easier by focusing on the “Optimal Recognition Point” (ORP), or the part of the word you look at while your brain processes the meaning of the group of letters.

Moving your eyes from word to word to find the next ORP accounts for about 80 percent of the time it takes to read conventionally-written words. To cut down on this wasted time, Spritz presents each word exactly where your brain wants it to be: in the same space on the screen and lined up by ORP.

The result? Your eye doesn’t have to search for the next ORP. And that means your brain can process content more efficiently — to, for example, whip through that longform article in a fraction of the time — which is the big appeal of this technology.

Image: ORP alignment in Spritz and a traditional speed-reading technique

A comparison of ORP alignment in Spritz and Rapid Serial Visual Presentation (RSVP), a common speed-reading technique.

Spritz is also ideal for smartphone and other small screens. Since the human eye can focus on about 13 characters at a time, Spritz only shows 13 or fewer characters at once.

To give Spritz a try, head to the app’s homepage. Choose your language and speed, then click the white display for a demonstration. Elite Daily also includes a helpful demonstration in their article about Spritz.

What do you think of this idea? Would you use an app like this to read faster?