From Feedly to Inoreader: We show you the best RSS reader services and tell you which apps you can use with them. RSS readers: How the market has changed since the end of Google Reader.
Until the first of July 2013, Google Reader was the de facto standard in RSS reader services. The free service’s API enabled an entire ecosystem of different feed readers. If you had read an article on a reader linked to the service, it was also marked as read in any other reader linked to your account. What was an enormously convenient service for us users was unlikely to have generated much revenue for Google. The shutdown of the service was therefore not surprising.
After the search giant announced the end of Google Reader in 2013, various providers set about developing their own alternatives. In the meantime, a whole range of services exist that have either copied the old Google Reader API or developed their own. Due to the fragmentation of the market resulting from the different APIs, the providers vary not only in price, but also in the number of compatible apps. To help you choose, we’ve picked out five ways to organize your RSS feed collection and keep it in sync across different apps.
If there’s one service that really blossomed after the demise of Google Reader, it’s Feedly. Under the name Normandy, Feedly developed a clone of the Google Reader API, which is now used to make almost countless RSS reader apps compatible across all platforms. If you’re looking for a free choice of reader app, there’s basically no way around Feedly. In addition to a web app, the industry leader also offers its own iOS and Android apps.
In the meantime, you can only subscribe to a maximum of 100 sources in the free version. At least: users who have already used the service before the introduction of the cap do not seem to be affected by this. Nevertheless, the paid premium version could be profitable. It not only integrates a powerful search function into the service, but also brings support for IFTTT, Zapier, Evernote, Pocket, Buffer, Dropbox and other services. In addition, feeds are supposed to be retrieved up to ten times faster than in the free version, and you can define your own keyword alerts that inform you about news on topics of your choice. For this, you pay $5.41 per month. There is also a team option for jointly maintaining feed lists. This costs $18 per month and user. Payment is possible by credit card or Paypal.
Unlike most competing services, Inoreader lets you subscribe to as many feeds as you want, even in the free version. In return, however, you have to live with advertising. The web app of the service scores with three different themes, and the mobile apps are also convincing. Podcast fans will be happy to know that Inoreader also has its own integrated audio player. If you don’t like ads, you have to pay at least $14.99 per year for Inoreader. Professionals, however, are more interested in the somewhat more expensive Plus and Professional offerings.
Plus costs $29.99 per year and allows you to create up to 30 rules. With these, you can easily find content and automatically tag it with a keyword, save it to Evernote or a similar service, or use it in a variety of other ways. In addition, ten filters are available and you can make 30 active search queries. The Professional version, on the other hand, costs $49.99 per year and not only removes the limits for rules, searches and filters, but also offers other practical features such as IFTTT integration or the ability to have articles translated directly via the service.
Service offers its own apps for the following platforms: Web, Android, iOS, Windows 10 Mobile, Windows Phone 8.1.
Okay, the Newsblur web app isn’t particularly fancy. However, after a certain amount of time to get used to it, the interface is quite functional and gives you a quick overview of what’s going on in the news. In contrast to Feedly, the free version of Newsblur is only interesting for people who only follow a few sources. You are limited to a maximum of 64 feeds. On the other hand, the paid version is much cheaper than Feedly at $24 per year.
Newsblur offers its own apps for iOS and Android. There are also a number of third-party apps that work with the service. However, the selection here is significantly smaller than with Feedly. At least Newsblur also offers its own IFTTT channel. In addition, the service is open source and is licensed under the MIT license. You can find the Newsblur source code on Github. Service offers its own apps for the following platforms: Web, iOS, Android.
AOL’s RSS reader
The AOL Reader offers an unadorned but functional web interface. There is also a suitable app for iOS. An Android version is said to be in the planning stage. The number of supported third-party apps is manageable. Nevertheless, you can find alternatives to the official apps. We have included AOL Reader in this list because the service is completely free. If you’re not picky about your reader apps and don’t feel like paying for an RSS reader service, you should take a look at AOL Reader. However, you are limited to a maximum of 1,000 feeds. For most users, however, this should not be a major problem.
You don’t want to rely on a cloud provider or proprietary software to manage your RSS feeds? Then Tiny Tiny RSS should be just the right solution. The software is open source and is licensed under the free GPL version 3 license. Like Fever, Tiny Tiny RSS relies on PHP on the server side. PostgreSQL is recommended as database.
In addition to the obligatory web interface, there is also an official Android app, which is also under an open source license. There is also an API for connecting third-party apps, but only a few feed readers use it. At least there is a Fever API plugin for the software. This allows you to retrieve your feeds with Fever-compatible apps.