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Four popular news readers

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In a post Google Reader world, for better or worse the Google Reader API will be no more and alternatives are being sought which can provide us with those never ending feeds we choose to follow.



Because of the world we now live in, a far different one to that which Reader was born, just having a news app on a single device is for many no longer an option, so a level of cross compatibility needs to be available or we might end up missing out on that all important news feed or spending hours updating multiple devices with those all important feeds..

Personally I’d be looking for a solution which worked on Windows Phone 8, iPad 3, Android Tablet, ChromeOS and Ubuntu.. As these are the devices I use regularly and actually show why a service such as Google Reader as a central repository was important to me.

Here are four news readers I use…

Flipboard

A strong contender for the cause of Google Readers death, Flipboard makes content look beautiful, in displaying content originally on the iPad now on iPhone and some Android devices in a touch based system making flipping through the pages your news feeds take up a pleasure. So much so in fact that on the post launch week the take up was so high the back end servers dropped so frequently the team who made the service had to suspend creating new accounts and connecting to the app..

Flipboard however is an App, and as such is limited to IOS and Android platforms, however does supply you with a wealth or curated content suggestions which can be viewed on any device you have Flipboard on when you log into your account. The service also pulls in feeds from Twitter, Facebook, Google Reader (for now) as well as rss content

If you read your news only on one of these two platforms Flipboard would be my recommendation for you, it’s a perfect example if good content ¬†and delivery are married.

Google Currents

Google has an offering again, it’s IOS and Android only, and yes it supports Reader and RSS feeds and it’s design is similar to the G+ offering on each platform, which doesn’t make for the best navigation experience. Like Flipboard it offers a wealth of curated content from the usual suspects as well. It’s not the worst interface in the world however it’s difficult to like the interface once I’ve tried Flipboard.

I would suggest this app, however while Flipboard exists if you are only going to need an IOS or Android app, and with Google Spring cleaning the way it is I’m reticent to recommend.

News 360

With all the talk of Reader replacements this is one option which I’ve not seen floated around, it offers the same level of curated content as the last two, a site based account as well, however it’s crowing glory could be its cross platform support. News 360 runs on IOS, Android, Windows Phone 8 or 7 and has a great web front end.

Using a like type system the service will provide more of what you want to see in your feed, and less of what you don’t as it learns what you want to read.

Interfaces on each platform are compatible and less good looking than maybe Flipboard, far easier than currents. Also the 360 part of the app title comes with how you spin and share stories.

If I had to recommend a reader alternative this would be it, if not just because of its multi platform compatibility but its impressive number of features,

Feedly

Feedly is going to, if it plays its cards right, emerge out of all of this as a winner, it’s in the midst of writing a drop in replacement API for Google Reader, and it’s Web interface is one of my favourites for reading my Google Reader feed. It’s mobile platform apps on Android and IOS while pretty do seem to be missing something I can’t put my finger on.

Unlike the other three Feedly does feed off Google Reader and doesn’t offer quite as many curated options (none)

Conclusion

While the self curated news feed is far from dead, it seems that on mobile platforms the curated magazine like offering is moving ahead with full steam, and why not, for many of us they are offering the feeds we need anyway and RSS as the second tier offering. And service which it’s as many platforms as possible with web based or app front ends is going to rule the roost. While Flipbook and Currents are big on IOS the future is mapped out on mobile platforms than more than this, getting onto so called second tier mobile platforms as well is the way forward for any platform in the long term. People subscribe to services not platforms which is why Spotify, Dropbox, Lastpass for example do so well…

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