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Replacements for Google Reader?


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In about a month Google is going to be shutting down Reader, which is their RSS reader service. Since I rely on RSS on a daily basis, I'm now going to have to find another RSS reader. There are various options online (like this one), but I was wondering if people here had recommendations for readers based on your own experience.

 

Here are my basic requirements:

  1. It has to be web based. I move between different computers and I want to see the exact same thing on all of them, so not Outlook.
  2. It has to be able to import my Reader subscriptions.
  3. It has to allow the option of looking at each feed separately (If I understand correctly Outlook basically throws everything into your inbox and I don't want something like that).
  4. I don't need something with a mobile app or anything like that. I usually only access these from PCs.

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Here are my basic requirements:

  1. It has to be web based. I move between different computers and I want to see the exact same thing on all of them, so not Outlook.
  2. It has to be able to import my Reader subscriptions.
  3. It has to allow the option of looking at each feed separately (If I understand correctly Outlook basically throws everything into your inbox and I don't want something like that).
  4. I don't need something with a mobile app or anything like that. I usually only access these from PCs.

 

No recommendations but I did want to comment on number 3.  Outlook doesn't throw any RSS feeds into your inbox.  They have an RSS Feeds folder, then under that is a folder for each feed.  I also wasn't aware that Google Reader was going away.  I set it up a few years ago and used it off and on but I didn't like the way it did a few things so hardly used it.

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I'm also disappointed Reader is going away. My two requirements are synchronization across devices and looking at a single feed at a time, so nothing Yair didn't cover.

Tried Feedly. We'll designed app but fails my requirements. Haven't gotten around to trying others yet.

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All the buzz i've caught on this topic the past couple months have Feedly and Newsblur as the top contenders. I've casually used Newsblur for a year or so, and would recommend it. Even if I were making this decision post-Reader-axing-announcement, would probably choose Newsblur again (just based on the guy behind it)

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I've toyed with Netvibes, but it does seems to be as update to on the feeds. I didn't care for Feedly cause it was not web based, you have to down load an app, unless I've completely missed something.

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So I finally had time to play more with Feedly, this time on the PC. I like it now, it just seems the Android app is a little limited/unintuitive as far as feed management goes. Now that I have things set up the way I expect I like it. I really like being able to drop related feeds into a category, then browse the category as a whole or look at individual feeds. I dislike that the PC version isn't just a webpage and that I need to have a browser extension to use it-- one that runs in the background even after I close out all Chrome windows. Final verdict is it's an aesthetically beautiful application but I'm not too impressed with the intuitiveness or some of the core decisions they've made. Undecided if it'll stick for the long term.

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OK, so I sampled a few services (which I was really hoping I wouldn't have to do) and here are my comments so far:

  1. Pulse is a no go. Either I'm really stupid or it should never have been on the list I linked to. As far as I can tell, you can't give it RSS feeds - you can only select topics and it will decide what it wants to show you. Also, it doesn't seem to have a list display, only various types of grids.
  2. I would be happy to test FeedReader if only it didn't insist that my CAPTCHAs are wrong when I try to register. Every single time. And I tried on two different browsers. If people here didn't recommend it I would probably have labeled it as a CAPTCHA farm.
  3. Netvibes is more reasonable. It took me a bit of fiddling around to set up the UI, but I managed to. It has some nice features which Reader doesn't have, such as a better ability to process items in list view (you can select all, then uncheck some and mark only the selected as read, which could be useful to me). A couple of big disadvantages I ran into (which might have solutions, but I couldn't find them) are:
    1. It seems to update much slower than Reader. That might be less of an issue, because it's RSS, but it still seems to be slower than I would like.
    2. It accepts the N key for "next", but not M for "mark as unread", which is an issue.
    3. It always shows all the feeds in the left pane, even if they don't have unread content. It will make those with unread content bold, but when you have 150 feeds divided into multiple categories, this is really annoying because it requires scrolling up and down to find the feed you want.

[*]The Old Reader is supposed to be a direct replacement for Reader and it does respond to the M key (albeit slowly), but it also has some issues of its own:

  1. While it can be configured to only show feeds with unread content, its UI is problematic - I don't really like something about the colors of its list view which makes it hard to read and it's quite slow - you will be seeing its "please wait" Pacman animation quite a lot when switching between feeds.
  2. It seems to be *really* slow to update. I imported feeds into it and Netvibes at the same time and more than a day later it only has 38 items where NV has 144 and some of those are old ones. I'm not sure how many Reader saw because I cleared almost all of them. It just doesn't seem to want to update.


I guess I'm going to have to check some of the others as well. Reader, while not perfect, made RSS look easy. I'm disappointed to find that these services don't provide the desired experience.

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  • 4 weeks later...

OK, so for the moment I settled on InoReader - https://www.inoreader.com/

 

There are some things that I don't like about it (it's slower than Reader, it doesn't jump to an article if I click on it in the right pane, it doesn't show the unread count in the page title, even the theme it calls minimalist is not minimalistic enough for me, it has occasional display bugs which require a refresh, it doesn't display right to left content nicely like Reader does automatically, etc.), but overall, I'll probably learn to live with it.

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  • 1 month later...

OK, after a month I can say I'm pretty happy with my choice. The developer regularly and officially handles feature requests (there's a change log) and I can say that almost all of the issues I mentioned in the previous reply have already been resolved and it now has some good features which Reader didn't have. If someone else needs an RSS reader I would certainly recommend it. Just make sure you go into the settings and configure it to your liking, because some of the defaults definitely didn't match what I like.

Edited by Yair
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