Only a few days left in the life of one of the best RSS reader ‘Google Reader‘, as Google is shutting down the service on July 1, 2013 sighting decline in usage over the last few years. With this announcement most of the unnoticed feed reader products began rebuilding their products and new feed readers popped up to get most of the people migrating out of Google Reader service. Most of them look way similar to Google Reader in terms of design, layout and usability. In addition they now offer quick migration of all your feeds in Google Reader to the respective services with few clicks.
We have come up with some of the best alternatives for Google Reader out there which seems to be worthy to migrate. This isn’t an exhaustive list, but a collection of some most popular alternative for Google Reader we could find and you may still find more good ones out there.
No doubt on that, Feedly is one of the best alternative for Google Reader. It offers a very simple design layout way similar to the new Google Reader design. You can read your feeds in web browser, mobile, tablets and desktop apps, which are always in sync. It provides multiple layout options, tagging, advanced sharing options to social networks and other services, keyboard shortcuts and more. Various other RSS readers are now using Feedly backend to power them-self and to create separate apps for feed reader.
Feedly allow quick migration and sync from Google Reader with “One click Google Reader Import” . It doesn’t rely on Google Reader’s API and have its own cloud based backend infrastructure. Finally the main point, Feedly service is absolutely free to use.
I really like the NewsBlur design and interface as its way similar to the Google Reader, making it feel like home. It allow you to read clean news stories as it remove the text formatting and images from the feed. Also it has option to display a post as it appears on the original website. Users can also share stories with friends using the ‘blurblog’ feature. With more control on Categories and Tags we are free from the over exposure of web news and only read those posts that’s interesting to us.
It’s also available on web, iPad, iPhone, and Android. The free version from NewsBlur have some limits like you can only subscribe to 64 feeds and read only 10 stories from each. In addition the Feeds are not updated in real-time and to get access to the service you need to wait in the queue. The premium version which is priced at $24/year solves all the above limitations and have lots of other features in-built.
Digg reader is still under development and only a handful of beta testers have access to the service. It allow instant migration of your feeds to the service from Google Reader and allow to retain your folder structure. Users can read the feeds either in list view or expanded view showing more details and images. It also allow users to share any posts with social networking sites and also save them to Instapaper, Pocket, or Readability.
As the product is till in development Digg aims to build better tools for organizing feeds and folders, as well as support for tagging. It will be also integrating IFTTT functions allowing you to add non RSS sources to your list. The product is available for free and support web browsers and iOS devices, with Android app coming within 3-4 weeks of launch.
The Old Reader
The Old Reader is a web-based RSS feed reader, currently in beta. Users need to first export their Google Reader data using Google Takeout service and then import them to The Old Reader service, as they don’t have automatic way in doing that. Design and layout have a sleek look and it supports most of the keyboard shortcuts from Google Reader.
As it’s a web-based reader, it doesn’t have a dedicated mobile apps, but with their API some mobile apps are providing support to them. The service is free to use.
AOL Reader which is currently in beta, provides a simple interface to read your feeds. It support web browsers and optimized for mobile browsers as it currently doesn’t have native mobile apps. The layout is simple with dark and light themes to choose from. It supports categories and tagging of your feeds which will help you in organizing the feeds better. It uses image cards, list view and full article view to display the feeds.
One downside we noticed is that, it doesn’t have a quick way to migrate from Google Reader, as it need you to export the data from your Google Reader using Google Takeout service and then import them to the service. As the service is free to use, there are large ads on the right side of the feed that you can’t get rid of.
As you see most of the service are still in development and lacks lots of features from that of Google Reader. There are lots of other alternatives like NetNewsWire, Feedbin, Reeder and even WordPress.com account which can be used to some extend. WordPress has a built-in RSS reader you may have not noticed, just sign in to your account and you end up in the Reader. You can easily add more feeds to the list, but the layout seems to be just like a blog with only excerpt getting showed.
Still we can except more companies to come forward and build the next innovative platform. Currently one true and completely free Google Reader alternative is Feedly which seems to provide better features with good layout design.
Which Google alternative are you using? let us know.