Friday, May 17, 2013

Feedly or Taptu when Google Reader Retires?

**Update 8/9/13
I've switched to Feedly. With Taptu, it's too difficult to add a new RSS. It drove me nuts. So, I looked at Feedly again and either they've updated or I just couldn't figure it out before, but you can now read your RSS feeds in the cloud, without having to install the Feedly extension/app in Chrome. That was really the only reason holding me back from using it. Plus, it's so easy to add a new RSS feed, and it's a pleasure to organize my feeds into categories. So, sorry Taptu, but I'm back to Feedly.

So we've known for a while now that Google Reader is closing up shop the summer. I've taken this time to test out several other RSS readers. I think I've finally settled on Taptu. But I tried Feedly and Currents first.

Here are my requirements:

  • I want to access my RSS Feeds (blog subscriptions) on any of my laptops.
  • I want to access them on my phone. 
  • I want a cool widget on my phone
  • I want to access them on my tablet. other words, I'd like to access them anytime I'm online. This turned out to be a pretty steep order. And it knocked out several nice applications right away. I like Google Currents, but I can only access that on my phone. Flipboard is beautiful, but I can't access that on my laptop.

The reason I want to use the same app is so that they sync. If I've already read that article on the newfangled gadget review on my phone, then I don't want to open up my laptop and see it again right there front & center.

Feedly was the next reader app, since it got a lot of buzz after the Google Reader announcement. I tried it and stayed with it a while. It met all of the aforementioned requirements. But I don't like having to download a browser app. I don't like those. They feel like browser extensions and too many of those can slow down your browser. I'm just finicky that way, I guess. I just want to go to a website and see my stuff, like I can with Google Reader. I use several different laptops and I just want to go the URL, not have to install an app.

So, then I found Taptu. Bingo! There's a bit of a learning curve, because it's laid out differently than other RSS readers. But after fiddling with it, I got it all set up. The web version is gorgeous (no app installation needed), the phone version is beautiful, and the widget is darn nifty. Screen shots below.

What it looks like to share. There are 2 more
 pages of choices to scroll through.
The Widget - you can flip through the stack of headlines

What it looks like to read an article.
The home page of the app

The layout of the web version is just as lovely and totally customizable! Yes, it will import your Google Reader RSS feeds!

Feedly does much of the same things. I just personally liked the way the Taptu widget functions better than the Feedly widget, although they were both equally appealing visually  Also, as I mentioned, I have a thing about browser apps.

Overall I chose Taptu, but either should function fine for your needs. You might want to go ahead and import your feeds somewhere soon before Google Reader rides off into the sunset!