The FLOSS hybrid reading app

Built together by readers, for the readers



We (as in "the human society as a whole") are in urgent need for good, truly FLOSS reading apps:

  • available as native apps for phones, tablets, and PCs
  • providing an ergonomic UI/UX for learning activities
  • supporting open formats to ensure interoperability with other tools
  • accessible to people with disabilities
  • respecting the reading privacy of the user
  • with a modular architecture = a "curated" core of essential functions + a community-driven repository of plugins
  • managed by a FLOSS project, with a commercially-friendly license available for free, promoting community development

Minstrel is a first step towards this goal: an app built by readers like you and me, for readers like you and me.

Installing the App

If you just want to install the app on your phone/tablet, you can download Menestrello, the official stable release of Minstrel maintained by ReadBeyond.

Developing the App

System Requirements

  1. Android SDK (Android) and/or Xcode (iOS)
  2. Apache Cordova 5.0.0

If you want to build the Android APK from command line, make sure the Android SDK is in your $PATH so that cordova can run it.


  1. Clone the GitHub repository and enter the cordova directory:

    $ git clone https://github.com/readbeyond/minstrel.git
    $ cd minstrel/cordova
  2. Create the Cordova project directory:

    $ bash create_minstrel.sh
    $ bash create_minstrel.sh android
    $ bash create_minstrel.sh ios

The first command will create both versions of the app, the last two commands will create only the specified version.

  1. Build the Android version:

    $ cd minstrel/
    $ bash build.sh

    will build the app and copy the generated APK into /tmp/.

  2. Build the iOS version:

    $ open minstrel/platforms/ios/Minstrel.xcodeproj

    will open the generated project in Xcode.


Basically, all you have is this Web page, the README on GitHub, the old Developers page, and the comments in the source code.

Unfortunately at the moment we do not have enough resources for properly documenting this project. You can help us by sponsoring this project (see below).


Would you like supporting the development of Minstrel?

We are open to accept sponsorships to

  • fix bugs,
  • add new features,
  • improve the quality and the performance of the code,
  • support other platforms (e.g., Web or Windows Phone),
  • acquire devices for testing purposes,
  • hire an accessibility expert to make the app accessible,
  • hire an UI designer to redesign the app, and
  • improve the documentation.

Feel free to get in touch.

Legal Information


Minstrel is released under the terms of the MIT License (MIT). See the LICENSE file for details.

See also the README file for the Font Licenses and Third-Party Licenses and Trademarks.

Privacy Policy

We value your privacy as much as we value ours. ReadBeyond does not collect any data about your eBooks, reading preferences, or reading statistics. On Android, the Network connection permission is requested solely because Minstrel uses a WebView ("in-app browser") to render the eBooks, however the app does not send data to nor receive data from the Internet, except for downloading a file when the user selects "Open with Minstrel" in the browser.