Rather than developing an iOS application internally, Reddit purchased the most popular third party application for iPhone and iPad, Alien Blue. Branding and relaunching the application as the official Reddit client, Alien Blue’s sole developer, Jason Morrissey, will now work internally for the company. The previous version of the Alien Blue application has been removed from the App Store and the new version of Alien Blue is now available for download on both iPhone and iPad.
When speaking about the acquisition, Reddit Head of Strategic Partnerships Ellen Pao said “Our whole philosophy has been to give our users choice. We’ve got the reddit AMA app, and Alien Blue coming out… but we really want users to use whatever they want. We think Alien Blue is great, and it’s the most popular reddit app on iOS. We wanted to be able to offer it as a reddit app, and we wanted to help Jase with additional resources to do everything he wanted to do with it.” Reddit representatives did not disclose any financial information related to the acquisition of the application.
Interestingly, anyone that downloads the new Alien Blue iOS application over the next week will be able to unlock premium features for free. The iPad version, previously $3.99, is completely free to download and the Pro features on the iPhone version, previously $1.99, can be unlocked for no charge.
Pro features on the iPhone include options such as switching between multiple user accounts, discovering new subreddits using specific keywords, blocking posts based on keywords and expanding all images posted as a standard URL in the comments. Anyone that’s already upgraded to the Pro version in the previous iPhone app needs to upgrade within the first week, otherwise the limitations of the app transfer system won’t allow users upgrade for free.
Regarding future Android compatibility, Reddit representatives are apparently hiring for other versions of Alien Blue. Approximately one month ago, the company launched a slick first party application for browsing the popular IAmA posts. The mobile application, available for both iOS and Android, help Reddit users sift through thousands of comments to see the best responses to questions.