I've gotten back to blogs again. And that meant I needed an RSS Reader. The qualifications:
- web-based but have an Android app
- interface gets out of my way to read an article
- favorite support
- syncs often
- still under active development
- ability to pay a reasonable price for the service (because it's useful for me)
In the past, I've installed readers myself and had it fetch updates, but I don't have the time to really monitor a server anymore. I once used Feedly so I loaded that back up. I paired down the feeds to blogs I was more likely to read and ones that were still updated. And went from there.
Here was what drove me crazy about Feedly:
- Feeds weren't refreshed very often. Faster updates were a feature of a paid account. I can see that (but didn't like it)
- Searching for stories/feeds was limited if you didn't pay. That never sat well with me.
- The Android app didn't sync very well. So an article I read an hour ago on the web would be unread on Android. Apparently this has gone on awhile and it's not solved by paying money.
- The paid price was too high for me. I'd like something in the middle with fewer features. But it was all or nothing.
I started looking for an alternative this spring. I thought seriously about The Old Reader but the lack of an official native app stopped me. Somehow I stumbled onto Inoreader – not sure how. I had never heard of it before and did some digging and it's ran by a Bulgarian company. No matter – it got good reviews and from what I read it's "for power users". And that's kind me. And it's what I stayed with.
It's interface is seemingly like Google Reader or, er, The Old Reader. Starting was easy – I exported my OPML from Feedly and imported it in. My categories and everything were moved over as well as starred items (i.e. favorites) where there. I've been using it for a few months and finally paid for the lowest plan and may upgrade a tier.
What do I like:
- It's fast.
- The Android app syncs my feeds!
- They have a tiered pay structure so I don't have to pay a high price for features I won't use.
- Rules is a paid feature. The lowest paid tier that I have only allows for one. I used it to mark certain stories as Read (because I'm not interested in them and they flood my feed). I may need more now that I have it working…
- Integrations are free! So I can send stories to Pocket without having to login to Pocket on my work computer.
- A customizable dashboard that I find pretty useful
But there are a few annoyances:
- There are ads. And no I can't blame them for that.
- You can add the same feed to multiple folders. This is obviously a feature but when I did it on accident, I found it annoying. YMMV
- The Starred items are hidden away in a folder that I tend to overlook
Overall I'm pretty happy with it.