Pocket is a company that has a read-it-later approach to online news and long-form journalism. They have plugins for all of the major internet browsers, and you can save your favourite news articles, and they will be automatically synced to their apps for Android or iOS. The service has been available on Kobo e-readers for almost a decade. However, this is going to change. Pocket has announced that Kobo e-readers will no longer be supported, and the Kobo will issue a firmware update to remove it.
Pocket put out a statement about some sweeping changes. “To provide additional security benefits to users, all Pocket accounts, including those that use Apple & Google authentication to log in, will be migrated to Firefox accounts starting July 11, 2023.” What does this mean for Kobo users?
Kobo devices, unfortunately, do not support the specific modern web technologies that Firefox accounts require. Therefore, once this transition is complete, Pocket users can no longer log in, sync, and read articles on Kobo e-Readers. Pocket said they recognize the value of this collaboration and deeply regret that they will not be able to continue supporting it.
The main reason Pocket is changing and not supporting Google or Apple logins is that Mozilla bought the company in 2017 and wants to use its login system for Pocket accounts. The company cited that this change was occurring to benefit users from enhanced security functionality, like two-factor authentication (2FA) and account recovery keys.
This is a severe blow to Kobo users; Kobo has not officially said anything about the discontinuation of Pocket yet, but the news just broke today. All Pocket users must log in with a Firefox account by August 15, 2023. So, Kobo has a month or two before they need to remove it from their e-readers since it will no longer work or have any functionality.
Update: June 29, 2023
Sarah Vasquez, the Senior Manager, Communication at Mozilla, told Good e-Reader in an exclusive statement, “Kobo is aiming to update the Pocket login on their e-readers to support Firefox accounts. The exact timing is to be determined. However, Pocket’s existing Kobo users will not be affected nor lose access to their accounts. Note that new Pocket accounts created after August 15th may not have access to the existing Pocket login option, depending on when Kobo support becomes available. Kobo users can continue using Pocket on their iOS or Android device or use Pocket’s website.”
Michael Kozlowski has written about audiobooks and e-readers for the past twelve years. Newspapers and websites such as the CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and the New York Times have picked up his articles. He Lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.