Wikipedia is a wealth of information and everyone uses it as their own personal Britannica in which to gain information about anything and everything. Here we evaluate Veveo Inc.’s WikiTap and Steam Heavy Industries Encyclopedia to find which is the easiest and quickest way to access Wikipedia’s vast knowledge!

WikiTap is an easy to use, not to mention free, Wikipedia search engine that produces not only the text output of an object but also any media related to it. It displays the images and links natively as if you were looking at the page itself and lists videos at the bottom that are related to the subject and posted on YouTube. Not only can you view the media but if you look up a particular word you can even listen to the way it should be pronounced.

Encyclopedia is another app that is available with similar features but a hefty price tag of $7.99. Encyclopedia downloads all of Wikipedia.com the first time you start it, which is about 2gb total, and stores it on your iPhone. However it doesn’t download images or other media, only text and internal links. This makes Wikipedia app a lot faster and able to operate in areas with no internet connection but at a large cost, both hard drive wise and on your pocketbook.

WikiTap on the other hand does take a few seconds to load a page but it is quite a bit faster than if you were browsing Wikipedia.com via Mobile Safari. Plus the page is sized and formatted to look the best possible on your iPhone, versus browsing a standard webpage. In one hand you have the speed, price, and hard disk consumption of Encyclopedia or the moderate speed, free use, and no hard disk usage of WikiTap. So if you like to use Wikipedia.com and usually have some sort of internet connection then WikiTap is for you. But if you have loads of hard disk space to spare, no internet connection, and don’t mind paying $7.99 then maybe you want to get Encyclopedia.