Mendeley promotes itself as “a free reference manager and academic social network.” It allows users to create searchable libraries of citations and PDFs, cite as you write, read and annotate PDFs, and connect to fellow scholars in a field of interest. Students, faculty, and staff of the University of Pittsburgh have access to the Mendeley Institutional Edition which allows for increased personal storage space among other benefits.
A free Mendeley app is available for iOS devices at Apple iTunes. Once downloaded, users must sign in with their existing Mendeley desktop account information or create a new account to get started.
The social network aspect of Mendeley is not integrated into the app, as it does not allow for searching of Mendeley’s crowd-sourced research catalog or for people to follow, however, the app syncs with the desktop version of Mendeley, allowing researchers to access their saved citations and PDFs from anywhere. Individualized folders, groups, and smart filters created in the desktop version of Mendeley are also visible through the app.
To save space, the full text of PDFs are not downloaded to devices automatically, but they can be downloaded individually for offline reading and annotations with the highlighter and sticky notes features. A bookmarklet to import citations and PDFs into the Mendeley app from the Web is available, but only for iPad users. Instructions to install the bookmarklet can be found under “Settings” in the app.
The Mendeley app is a great tool for researchers that want to access their existing citation libraries and saved PDFs on the go. Support for the app is available online. Note: There is currently no official app for Android, but free third party options are available.