Lately I’ve become addicted to RSS… I decided to do a quick note of what i think of the 2 most common readers, Google Reader and Bloglines. Let me start with Bloglines.
As soon as i signed up for a Bloglines account, I went to the ‘Quick Pick Subscriptions’ sections, and ticked a few of the options available under various topics clicked on ‘Subscribe to my selections’ and then i received an error message, something to the effect that my selection could not be processed. However I did manage to add a few subscriptions manually. I later found out that they were experiencing some technical glitches… hence the error messages. I noticed that, the interface is very cluttered and not very user friendly. Another thing i didn’t like was that if I click on a feed, it will immediately mark all items as read unless you check the ‘keep new’ box.
Its not like there was nothing i liked about Bloglines, I really like some features:
- The search feature (because its useful and Google Reader does not have a search)
- The clippings feature
- The blog feature. However, it would have been better if instead of publishing to the Bloglines blog, one was able to publish to an external Blog App of choice, e.g. WordPress.
- Bloglines is Web Based!!! -easy access from anywhere.
Ok… Lets move on to Google Reader
Let me start by mentioning that the new interface is still in the ‘Labs’ so a few things might not be up to the mark, but i really think that Google Reader IS THE BEST web based RSS reader available. It has everything multiple viewing options, keyboard shortcuts, integrated podcast/mp3 player, auto sorting and tags to name a few. The interface is clean, neat and organised. The only thing missing from this is a Search option, that is desperately needed. If you add a few scripts from Greasemonkey, your in for an RSS treat! If u already use another RSS reader, its easy to import (and export) your OPML file directly into Google Reader…
Both these RSS readers are leaders in their own right, and that is exactly why the two are neck and neck at the top of web based readers. I suppose it does boil down to popularity and user taste in the end. Personally i don’t see myself moving away from Google Reader in the near future, but I think if Bloglines just works on their Layout a bit, I might be tempted to make the switch!….