Google Reader is Dead – Long Live Google Reader!

by AB@AspiringBlogger.com

Google Reader Retirement from Feedly

If you’re reading this after 7/1/2013 – then the title is true – Google Reader is dead, and its passing has caused a lot of sadness – especially for me. If you’ve never heard of Google Reader, in its simplest form, it takes content from websites (mainly blogs) and aggregates them all into one place for you to see. So instead of constantly checking your favorite blogs 5 times a day to read their new stories – you can just check your Google Reader for the most up to date posts!

I read and (try to) comment on a lot of blogs – from personal finance to gadgets to cars – and depending on my mood, I can look through my Google Reader at my RSS feeds and find something to entertain me. Unfortunately for me, and a lot of you out there, Google went through a “Spring Cleaning” and decided that it no longer made sense to support Google Reader and gave everyone 3.5 months to find an alternative. As Google’s service was so robust – the alternatives have been pretty crappy. I use “MobileRSS” on my iPad, but it just pulls in Google’s data – and frequently gives me errors so it’s not really that awesome. When I’m on my PC/Mac – I just use Google’s native client. So with Google Reader shutting down soon and no viable replacements – what the hell are you supposed to do now?

Save Your Data

Before you do ANYTHING ELSE, you need to go to Google and get a copy of your data. They have a website – Google Takeout – that will let you export your Google Reader data. This way, if you miss the deadline, or move to another service that doesn’t work out – at least you will have a list of all your feeds in a safe place (your desktop, Dropbox, iCloud, etc).

Save your Data with Google Takeout

The Replacements

Well, with the shutdown announcement, several websites decided this would be their moment to shine. Chief among them have been Feedly, Digg, and AOL – who have all come out (or announced) a Google Reader substitute. So which one should you use? Which one should you throw your support behind? Well, at least 8 million people have jumped on the Feedly bandwagon – according to this news report. I decided to check each of these alternatives out to determine which was the best one right now. I understand that over time each will develop – but I need something in a couple of days, so I need the best RIGHT NOW!

AOL Reader

I signed up to use AOL’s newly announced Reader – and was met with a wait list…bummer. I guess AOL Reader is off my list to replace Google Reader – at least in the short term!

Beta Wait list for AOL Reader - Google Reader Replacement

Digg Reader

I tried to sign up to use Digg’s new service, but all they have is a countdown clock that runs out when Google Reader shuts down…. another one off my list!

 Wait List for Digg Reader - to Replace Google Reader

Feedly Reader

The names for these services are horribly uncreative… I know they’re all trying to just slot in and make us all forget about Google Reader – but come on – couldn’t someone use anything other than “Name + Reader”????? Ok, back to the subject at hand. When I tried to sign up for Feedly Reader…it actually worked!! I know that Feedly has been integrating Google Reader data for a long time, but considering they are the only MAJOR site that will even let me look at their product? I think they’ve got a winner on their hands (and just look how nicely this site displays on their web interface!). Combine that with their sleek interface, suite of apps, and first to market presence – and I think they could definitely become the 800 pound gorilla in the market once Google pulls the plug.

Feedly showing Aspiring Blogger

Conclusion

I know that a lot of people reading this blog and other personal finance / financial independence sites around the web use Google Reader on a daily basis. I love it, and am definitely sad to see it go. I hope that more competitors pop up in the near future, and that we get some great products as a result. For now though, I’m going to transition over to Feedly until something better comes along… or until I’m allowed into one of the other sites!

Have you found an alternative to Google Reader? Let us know in the comments below. Do you agree with my assessment that Feedly is the only real option right now? Thanks for stopping by!

AB

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

KC @ genxfinance June 25, 2013 at 7:01 pm

Long live Google Reader. You will be forever remembered. Anyway, I’ve heard of Feedly just recently and I heard good feedback about it. This might be our guy.

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AB@AspiringBlogger.com June 26, 2013 at 8:30 am

Hey KC – I think that at least in the short run, Feedly is where it’s at… of course, when Google flips the switch next week…who knows what will happen!
AB

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Sam Ronicker (@Sronicker111481) August 6, 2013 at 7:59 am

I lost almost ALL my data when G Reader shut down! It’s no longer available on takeout and I’m just now finding you blog! I did save some of my data by the Mac App “Reeder,” but since it pulled from Google exclusively, it’s also dead. I’ve tried a few others apps don’t work very well for me. I don’t want ANOTHER program running that I have to swap to, I just want a webservice. I did find netvibes.com and it’s not bad. Though I could do without the adverts for their “pro” service. I don’t need that crap, I just want an RSS compiler to read my favorite blogs without having to visit 20 different websites!

Oh well, maybe Google will bring back reader? We should start a petition.

Reply

AB@AspiringBlogger.com August 8, 2013 at 10:42 pm

Hey Sam – sorry you lost all your data – that’s a real pain!!! Have you tried Feedly? I’m not sure if you can still import Google Reader data…but it might be worth a try. Good luck with the petition – I’ll definitely sign it if you want to get it going! Thanks for stopping by!
AB

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Sam Ronicker (@Sronicker111481) August 9, 2013 at 4:12 am

Sure I’ll start one, don’t know what good it’ll do I found a similar one that had over 100,000 signatures BEFORE Reader got shut down.

https://www.change.org/petitions/google-corporation-bring-back-google-reader

Reply

AB@AspiringBlogger.com August 17, 2013 at 7:58 pm

Yeah – probably not going to do a lot unfortunately. I’m still using Feedly and it’s pretty decent. It has apps for iOS, and works well on mac/pc so I’m pretty happy – but it’s definitely not as good as Google Reader.
AB

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