It came as a shocker to all of us earlier this year (March 13) after Google officially declared to abandon its long time “Reader” subscribers. The fate is sealed and now the time draws near! Come July 1st, Google Reader will suffer the same fate as some of its predecessors – Google Wave, Google Knol, Google Buzz, and Picnik and so on. Google has already dispatched notifications to ‘Reader’ subscribers during the course of the last 3 months. The notification mail simply stated that “Google Reader” is going off the radar once and for all, and that, those who wish to keep their ‘Reader’ history intact with them can download their Google Reader usage history by applying for the same.
What surprises experts is not the fact that Google abruptly took this vital decision of abandoning millions of Reader subscribers. They’re even unperturbed by the fact that Google might stand a chance to lose out on popularity from archrivals Yahoo and Bing, once they close down ‘Reader’. The fact that Google made this announcement a good 3 months prior to finally shutting off Google Reader is what they are most apprehensive about! According to industry veterans, this exercise clearly facilitated “others” to get ample time on their hands to develop/upgrade their small-time NewsFeed Applications, allowing them to proliferate in the new found market, sans Google Readers’ domineering presence.
As far as alternatives are concerned, Google Reader subscribers would still get 2 more days that is 48 hours, to migrate to newer platforms. There are ample alternatives. Let’s take a look at few of these –
Feedly – They may not be the proverbial ‘new kid on the block’ but honestly, have you heard of them until now? Essentially, “Feedly is Lovely” as David Pogue from The New York Times puts it. The site itself says in their homepage that only two types of people will find Feedly as an invaluable tool. First, those who have been acclimatized to checking their “Google Reader” feed after waking up every morning, to catch a glimpse of what they consider as invaluable source of neatly purged news and views on their choicest topics from the cyber world.
Secondly, those who have never heard of them before and are essentially naive about how a ‘Reader Application’ works; they would find Feedly incredibly handy! For the veteran Google Reader users, Feedly is offering a 1-click migration facility from Google Reader to their platform. All that the Reader user has to do is go to Feedly and click on the Big Blue Button that says “Once-click Google Reader Import”. That way you can migrate and safeguard your feeds (and tags) from Reader to Feedly and will continue getting your custom feeds delivered every day!
Besides Feedly, there are a few others in the kitty and here they are –
Curata Reader – Dubbed as “the cleanest Reader” and specially designed for users who take a keen interest in businesses, this one-of-a-kind feed reader lets you enjoy its filtering and article searching features free of cost.
Digg Reader – Social bookmarking site Digg has been developing a news feed reader for quite some time and this is just their golden opportunity to cash in! According to grapevine, Digg will soon unveil their exclusive feed reader application called ‘Digg Reader’. Chances are the app will be exclusive to the Android platform.
Paid Reader Apps – In fact, there are few names to recall; Newsblur, Feed Wrangler and Feedbin are worthy of mention. Their subscription rates vary; from paying as modest as $2 to a pricier $24, you’ll get to enjoy tailored news feed from these awesome apps. And what is more, unlike Google Reader, which is free, these ‘paid’ readers are very likely to go off the grid!
If you can’t do without a daily dose of news on your choicest topics, delivered to your inbox, early in the day, it’s time to shift gears! Bid adieu to Google Reader and embrace the future.