Google Reader is going away. The good news is a few companies have already stepped up to offer services to take its place. AOL Reader beta is already live. Launching a RSS reader is not a bad move by AOL at all considering that so many Google Readers are still looking for a service to replace their favorite RSS reader. AOL Reader offers a minimalist layout and basic features for a feed reader. The product has ways to go to reach its full potential. AOL is planning to offer these features in the future:
- Native iOS and Android Apps
- Export feeds to OPML
- Sharing within AOL Reader and with other AOL Reader users
- Integration with additional third party services
The product is in beta at this point. It does have many shortcomings but considering that Google Reader is dying in a few days, this is better than nothing (especially if you are not a fan of Feedly or NewsBlur).
AOL is not the only company working on a RSS reader. It seems Facebook will be getting involved in this game. Facebook is already the king of social networks. The Wall Street Journal is now reporting that Facebook is putting together its own news aggregator. It will look like Flipboard:
The social network has been quietly working on a service, internally called Reader, that displays content from Facebook users and publishers in a new visual format tailored for mobile devices, people with knowledge of the matter said.
This feature has been in the works for over a year. It will be interesting to see whether Facebook’s Reader can replace Google Reader. Even if it isn’t, Feedly, NewsBlur, Digg, and Fever are all more than capable of tracking your feeds.