PROS / This program lets you import your own texts.
CONS / It is missing some text settings and eye-training exercises.
VERDICT / RocketReader is versatile software that tracks your progress and adjusts speed accordingly, but it's not the best choice for educators and organizations since it's limited to one user.
RocketReader speed reading software has a simple colorful interface that makes it easy for users of any age to sharpen their speed reading skills. It has basic exercises and tests and enough included reading material to keep you engaged as you learn. However, it lacks a few options in regards to exercises, text customization, connectivity and customer support.
The software is intuitive with clear labels and colorful icons. It has a good variety of exercises and tests and even a vocabulary trainer. We were happy to see a section dedicated to building vocabulary but were disappointed that instead of standard words, there was only a small amount of obscure phrases and axioms with odd multiple choice options. We did not find the vocabulary option helpful at all.
You can practice your newly-discovered speed reading skills on any of the 500 included eBooks, which gives you a better chance of training with the type of material you prefer to read. The program allows you to manually adjust the speed the text is displayed, or you can let the software automatically adjust it according to your progress. It tracks your word-per-minute rate and test scores so you can follow your progress.
RocketReader also gives you the option to import your own text or to export the software to use to speed read web pages. This lets you maintain more consistency in your daily readings, whether it’s with email, news stories or even reading for fun. Unfortunately, the software is designed for only one user, so it doesn’t work for large organizations nor does it have any password protection options.
There are built-in tutorials that can help you with a particular exercise or other aspect of the software. You can contact the company through email if you have further questions. However, unlike some of the higher-ranking software we reviewed, it does not come with free lifetime software upgrades or customer support via telephone.
The software is compatible with Windows Vista, 7 and 8, but lacks Mac OS X or Linux compatibility. Additionally, RocketReader’s website was down for a few days, which has made the online software service completely unavailable. If you don’t like having to depend on servers and internet connections in order to have access to a product, you may want to consider a program that is downloadable.
RocketReader is a decent option for speed reading, though we didn’t feel its high price tag, which was double or more the cost of the other software, is worth it. We were impressed with the large quantity of books it comes with and its variety of exercises and tests, but its unreliable website and lack of text options, computer compatibility, free upgrades and steep price tag is why it sits toward the bottom of our list.