Web pages can be cluttered places to spend time. Particularly on a smaller device like an iPhone or iPad, ads, in-page links, external links, navigation bars, form fields etc. often take up more of your limited screen space than the article you might be hoping to read. Whether you are using the zoom or pinch zoom features in your device for magnification or using the Voiceover screen reader to navigate and listen to the on screen content, all of those extraneous elements can make reading a chore.
The Safari Reader function is Apple's solution to this, and it works like a charm and is built right into your iOS device. When you open a web page in Safari, if you are working visually you may see a small icon that looks like lines in a paragraph in the left hand corner of the search and address bar. If you are working with Voiceover, once the page loads, the screen reader will announce, "Reader available". It's important to know that the reader will not be available on every web page you visit but rather only on pages that contain an article of some sort and even then, it's not always available. Of pages that contain articles, I would guess that about eighty percent can utilize the reader.
If you see the reader icon appear on the left edge of your address and search bar, tap it and you will see everything on the page disappear except the content that relates directly to the article. If you are using Voiceover, wait for the page to finish loading then drag your finger around the top left corner of your screen until you hear the screen reader announce: "Reader, button. Shows or hides Safari Reader". Lift your finger and then double tap on the screen to activate the reader. Do the same to deactivate it.
The text that appears is bold black against a white background and fills the screen from edge to edge. Other content like videos or images that belong with the article will also load into the reader. Everything else is gone.
There are a couple things to note when using Safari Reader. Once activated, you will not be able to pinch zoom the article. However, the iOS zoom utility works just fine. Also, if your article is spread over multiple web pages, you will likely have to exit the reader to find the link to move to the next page and the re-enter the reader when the new page loads.